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Writing 5: Rhetoric of Disability and Accessibility

Resource Assessment Checklist

Top of ForUse this list of questions to evaluate both popular and scholarly sources.

CURRENCY: Timeliness of the Information

  • When was the information published or posted?
  • Has the information been revised or updated? If yes, when and why?
  • Is the information current or out-of-date for your topic? How do you know?

RELEVANCE: Importance of the Information for Your Needs

  • Who is the intended audience?
  • Does the information relate to your topic or answer your research question?
  • Is the information at an appropriate level (not too basic or advanced for your needs)? Why or why not?

AUTHORITY: Origin of the Information

  • Who is the author and/or publisher?
  • What are the author’s credentials or organizational affiliations? In other words, what are the author’s qualifications to write on the topic?
  • If your resource is a webpage, does the URL reveal anything about the author or the source? (Ex: .com is a commercial website, .edu signifies an institution of higher learning, .org could be a charity, .gov is a government resource.)

ACCURACY: Reliability, Truthfulness, & Correctness of the Content

  • Where does the information in the source come from (ex: a scientific study or survey, an interview with a witness, the author’s personal experience)?
  • Is the information supported by verifiable evidence? Can you corroborate any of the information in another source or from personal knowledge?
  • Has the information been reviewed or refereed (i.e. peer review journal, editor, etc.)?

PURPOSE: The Reason the Information Exists

  • What is the author attempting to get you to do now that you have the information? Are they trying to persuade you to agree with them, inform you about an important topic, teach you a new concept, sell you something, or entertain you?
  • Do the authors make their intentions clear? How?
  • Does the language, tone, and point of view seem unbiased and free of emotion or are there political, cultural, ideological, institutional, or personal biases present?

Having evaluated this source using the CRAAP Test, would you be comfortable using this source for your research paper? Why or why not?

** This exercise is adapted from the video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3B2UCdmzZpM. 

Evaluating Resources