Skip to Main Content

Misinformation and Disinformation: Thinking Critically about Information Sources

This Research Guide is adapted from a guide developed by the Research Center at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism

Evaluating Web Sites Using the C.R.A.A.P. Test

There is too much information on the World Wide Web.

How can we distinguish what is factual, reliable, and trustworthy?

The C.R.A.A.P. test is a way to evaluate any type of information, including Web Sites. 

The C.R.A.A.P. test was originally created by Sarah Blakeslee, of the University of California at Chico's Meriam Library.

Currency (when?):

1. What is the date of publication?

2. Does the source use recent information?

3. Are the references and/or links current?

4. Does currency matter for this topic? Why or why not?

Relevancy (what?) :

1. What aspect of your research question(s) does this source answer?

2. Is the intended audience appropriate for academic research?

3. Does this source provide a new perspective or piece of information?

4. Is this information related to your research?

Authority (who?) :

1. What credentials does the author have?

2. Does the author have any relevant affiliations with a respected university or organization?

3. What can you find about the author online?

4. Has the author published on this subject before?

Accuracy (what?) :

1. Does the source contain any false information or errors?

2. Does the source use reputable sources to support the claims made?

3. Is the information on the web site verifiable and supported by evidence?

4. Does the information seem complete, or are facts missing?

Purpose (why?) :

1. Is this information fact or opinion?

2. Why did the author create this web site?

3. What is the purpose of this web site?

4. Is this web site advertising a product or service?

5. Is it educational or informative?