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REL 495: Senior Seminar: Websites

Good site? Bad site?

read first buttonEvaluating Information—Applying the CRAAP Test

When you search for information on the Web you’re going to find lots of it…but is it accurate and reliable? Whether you are reading a book or looking at a website, be an information skeptic--scrutinize, analyze, and evaluate its quality. You be the judge. The following are suggestions to help you with your evaluation. Post any questions in the "comments" area below.
Currency: The timeliness of the information.
• When was the information published or posted?
• Has the information been revised or updated? 
• Is the information current or out-of-date for your topic?
Relevance: The ability to address your needs.
• How well does this suit your topic or answer your question? 
• Who is the intended audience?
• Would you be comfortable using this source for a research paper?
Authority:  This is where trust, credibility, and reputation is important.
• Who is the author/publisher/source/sponsor?
• Are the author’s credentials or organizational affliations given?
• What are the author’s qualifications to write on the topic?
• Is there a way to contact the author?
Accuracy:  The reliability, truthfulness, and correctness of the informational content.
• Where does the information come from?
• Has the information been reviewed or refereed?
• Can you verify any of the information?
• Does the language or tone seem biased and free of emotion? 
Purpose:  The reason the information exists.
• What is the purpose of the information?  to inform? teach? sell? entertain? persuade?
• Do the authors/sponsors make their intentions or purpose clear?
• Is the information fact? opinion? propaganda? 

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Primary Religious Sources

Recommended Websites

warning icon Websites are often referred to as online/internet sources--not to be confused with online journals and databases--and are more questionable by nature. Check with your instructor if you are allowed to use internet sources.

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