Skip to main content

Washington State University Libraries

Ask Us!

English 101 - Houser: Home

Using the CRAAP test to evaluate your sources

The questions on this worksheet can help guide your evaluation of your sources to determine whether they are appropriate in terms of Currency, Relevance, Authority, Accuracy and Purpose....


This library guide has been designed for students enrolled in Professor Victoria Houser's English 101 class.

Research topic: The role of undergraduate participation in research at R1 Institutions

Goals for today:

  • Review how to recognize an academic article to ensure that you have the six scholarly sources you need for your bibliography.
  • Identify and explore a couple of additional databases/discovery tools that you can use to identify 2 additional sources that support your thesis/expand your argument.
  • If appropriate to your topic, locate opinion polls related to your research through the Pew Research Center.
  • You might also want to explore reports in CQ Researcher to identify additional information that you might want to incorporate into your paper.


Let's look for a couple examples of scholarly articles using Academic Search Complete......

Looking at your bibliographies...

Below are some things to think about as you consider the sources you cited:

  • How do your sources relate to your thesis?
  • How do your sources relate to one another? Can you identify relationships between your sources?
  • Do you evaluate/interpret each source to provide some context for the reader?
  • Is there at least one source to support each of your arguments/points?
  • Which sections of your essay could be strengthened by adding another source?

1) Now exchange bibliographies with a partner. Tell them a little bit about your research and ask them to identify one source from your bibliography and evaluate it using the CRAAP test. (You don't have to score each question, just use the questions to help guide the evaluation)

2) Can your partner identify the six scholarly sources in your bibliography?

3) Now that you know a little about the CRAAP test.....can you find and evaluate one additional potential source for your partner?



Which of the articles below is not scholarly?

Some questions to ask when identifying a scholarly article are:

1) Does the article provide more information about the author, such as where they research (institutional affiliation), their credentials (degrees earned) or other information such as past publications/research areas?

2) Does the article begin with an abstract? Many, but not all, scholarly articles do. Yours might, and if it does, this is a good indication that it is scholarly. If it doesn't, try to evaluate it using 1) (above) and 3) (below).

3) Does the article conclude with list of cited references, or a "Works Cited", or a bibliography?


Gabriella Reznowski
Holland and Terrell Libraries, 120-H
WSU Libraries, PO Box 645610, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-5610, 509-335-9671, Contact Us