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Evaluate Your Sources: Summary

Goal: Find a current information source for your information needs.

Evaluating the information you find, whether in print or digital format, is an essential aspect of doing research. The criteria for evaluation (accuracy, authority, bias/purpose, currency, and relevance) are interconnected. Take everything into account to determine how well the information source addresses your specific information needs. Librarians create mnemonic devices to help students learn and apply evaluation criteria to information. ACRAB, CAARP, and TRAAP are examples.

How do you know which sources of information to trust? Use one of these three methods. Be aware that your teacher may require you to use one over the other.

A CRAB

CAARP

T.R.A.A.P.

 

Timeliness
Relevance
Authority
Accuracy
Purpose

Avoid falling into an information trap. Learn to think critically about the source of information and the information within each source by applying the T.R.A.A.P. evaluation criteria. Once acquired, the habit of critical analysis will serve you in everything you read.

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St. Louis Community College Libraries

Florissant Valley Campus Library
3400 Pershall Rd.
Ferguson, MO 63135-1408
Phone: 314-513-4514

Forest Park Campus Library
5600 Oakland
St. Louis, MO 63110-1316
Phone: 314-644-9210

Meramec Campus Library
11333 Big Bend Road
St. Louis, MO 63122-5720
Phone: 314-984-7797

Wildwood Campus Library
2645 Generations Drive
Wildwood, MO 63040-1168
Phone: 636-422-2000