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Astronomy: Evaluating Your Sources

Featuring Okanagan College Library's resources for Astronomy

Evaluating Sources

Adapted from The CRAAP Test, developed by librarians at California State University, Chico

Is it scholarly??

The Internet and the Library make it is easy to find information, but it is more difficult to identify sources you can rely on. Evaluate your sources carefully to ensure you've selected material that is trustworthy and appropriate for your assignment. 

Use this chart to help you evaluate your sources:

 

 

Scholarly Academic Publication

Popular Publications

Author

Written by an expert in the field of study (an academic or trained specialist) Written by those without expertise in the field (a member of the public or journalist) or no author is stated 

Date

Date of publication is provided Popular publications, especially WWW publications, often do not give a date of publication

Publisher

Colleges/Universities, professional associations, scholarly publishers + research institutes    Commercial for-profit publishers or members of the public

Purpose

To report on experiments, theories, case studies + other research    To sell advertised products, inform, promote a point of view or entertain

Editing

Peer review by experts in the field Review by a generalist (a magazine editor) or no review

Documentation

Sources used in the author's research are cited in a reference list or footnotes    Sources are rarely cited or are inaccurate

Other

Accurate spelling + grammar, few advertisements, logical + well written

Spelling + grammar errors may occur, many advertisements, poor or variable writing quality

(Modified, original source UBC Library

 

For more information on evaluating information sources, see:

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