Evaluate the Resources and Information you find:
Don't blindly accept the information you find! Consider the source of the information and its context. Ask yourself key questions when evaluating source information:
Credibility - Who wrote or created a particular work? Is he/she an expert in the field of study? Is the piece from a peer-reviewed journal or a popular magazine? If it is a book, who published it - a university press, a trade press, a vanity press? If it is a website, who sponsored it?
Currency - How up-to-date is the information? Depending on your topic, you may need to rely on older resources, or you might need the most current scientific data available. If you are using a book or article, note when it was written. For a website, look for both when it was created and when it has last been updated.
Reliability - Does the person writing the piece have a possible agenda - how biased is the information presented? Are references included for information? Do you trust the source? Does the information in this work match what you have read in other sources?
Relevancy - How relevant is the information to your research needs? Is there something else that would fit your needs better?
Adapted from: Taylor, Terry. “Evaluating Information.” 100% Information Literacy Success. New York: Thomson, 2007. 101-39, &
Evaluating Information: Applying the CRAAP Test. Meriam Library, California State University, Chico.
http://www.csuchico.edu/lins/handouts/eval_websites.pdf. Oct 1, 2008.
Peer-review/Refereed Journals published articles that are written by experts and reviewed by experts in the same field (their peers) to ensure high quality prior to publication.
Trade Publications are magazines and other publications written for a particular audience, such as the magazine American Libraries for librarians. Articles may be written by professional writers or members of the profession, and are generally selected by the publication's editor.
Mass-market Publications are magazines, newspapers and other publications written for a general audience, such as People magazine or the New York Times. Articles are usually written by journalists, and generally selected by the publication's editor.
Social Media, as defined by the Oxford English Dictionary, is "websites and applications which enable users to create and share content or to participate in social networking." Social media may be created by anyone who has access to it, and is not selected by an editor or expert.
This content adapted from information from Golden Gate University and is used under Creative Commons license.
Types of Fake News:
These definitions are taken from a CNN article with Dr. Melissa Zimdars, of Merrimack College and Alexios Mantzarlos, head of the International Fact-Checking Network at the Poynter Institute.