Authoritative Sources: What Qualities Make Information Available on the Internet valid?

So, your instructor has just given a fun project to your class. You get to investigate a topic of your choice and then present your findings to the class! You log on to the internet and type your search term into a web browser. As you read multiple articles, you start to wonder: how would you know if a source is reliable?

There are dozens of websites chock-full of information that is erroneous, unreliable, or just plain wacky for every credible one. Such sites can be a minefield of potential hazards for the naïve, unskilled journalist or researcher (Tony Rogers, 2019).

One of the best aspects of the Internet would be that it allows anyone to express themselves. However, it also implies that people have a lot of room to develop untrustworthy sources. Fortunately, there’s a simple test you can use to determine whether or not to consider a source. What exactly are we discussing? Of course, the C.R.A.A.P. test!

However, the C.R.A.A.P. test can also help you avoid plagiarizing content., 2019 mentioned in their online article that Plagiarism is regarded as a major infringement of academic ethics in the world of academia, and it is penalized by a variety of consequences, including removal from an institution or dismissal from a job.

And What Is C.R.A.A.P TEST?

The acronym C.R.A.A.P. stands for current, relevant, authoritative, accurate, and purposeful. Each word can aid in determining the reliability of a source for your research thesis help. We always start with the most recent information—when was it published or updated? In most cases, current data is more accurate and reliable. This is especially true when learning about areas that change rapidly, such as technology.


When analyzing the currency of a source, you should ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is the time of the site’s most recent revision clearly stated?
  • There a date specified for when the data was collected?
  • The site kept up to date?
  • Are the links up to date; that is, do they work?
  • Is this the most up-to-date information on the subject?


Relevance refers to how important the knowledge is for your specific needs:

  • Is the information pertinent to your subject or does it answer your question?
  • Who is the target market?
  • Is the content at a correct scale for your needs (e.g., not too basic or advanced)?
  • Have you examined a range of different sources before deciding on this one?
  • Does it appear to be true?
  • Do you think you could use this source in a research paper?


Because it demonstrates who is in control of the site, whoever wrote the content presented there, and more, authority is vital in assessing the authenticity of a website. It’s critical to examine an author’s background knowledge to determine where the writer’s possible biases lay, how the author obtained this information, and so on.

The term “author” here refers to a person, a corporation, or an institution.

When evaluating the credibility of a source, you should ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is the name of the author mention?
  • The writer’s institutional connection stated, with a link to the institution’s web page?
  • Author’s relationship with the institution clear?
  • A contact address email or phone number provided for the author?
  • Is there a way to get more information on the author?

The majority of this data can be obtained on a website’s About Us or Contact Us pages. If your source is a paper, online publication, blog, or other similar publication, information about the author can be found at the opening or conclusion of the article, while information about the newspaper, magazine, or other publication can be discovered in the About Us and the Contact Us link on a website.


When judging the accuracy of a source, you should ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is the data accurate and free of mistakes?
  • Is there a bibliography to back up the information?

What is the significance of this? A reference works cite, or bibliography section or page should have include if a site acknowledges other sources, so that people may check that the material utilize in the site has use correctly and ethically. You may also use the sources section to seek more references for your article!

  • Is it apparent who is accountable for the material’s accuracy?
  • Are there any references to other trustworthy sources?
  • Are the sources for statistical materials explicitly identify if they are include?
  • Where did they get their information?
  • Were they able to rely on reliable sources?
  • Is there any way to verify this information with other sources?


Consider the source’s intent. If the goal is to enlighten or educate, the source is more likely to be trustworthy than ones that are intend to convince or sell you anything. Also, be aware of sites with a strong bias. Make sure that any sources you consult are fact-base rather than opinion-base. The reason for the information’s existence:

  • What is the information’s aim (e.g., to inform, instruct, sell, entertain, or persuade)?
  • Are the writers’ and/or sponsors’ intents or goals made clear?
  • Is this information true, false, or propaganda?
  • Is it unbiased or skewed?
  • Do you have any political, philosophical, social, religious, institutional, or personal prejudices?


How is it so critical to double-check a source’s authenticity? On the internet, misleading news and false information may spread swiftly. You can make sure you’re not relying your thoughts or decisions on false information by using the C.R.A.A.P. test. However, to avoid these problems you can also look for any online assignment editing service in USA for your assignment for research paper writing. They have experts in these fields and they never make such kinds of mistakes.

Lastly, How much time spent on the internet daily? If you keep track, you might find that you spend many hours per day on the Internet. As a result, you’re going to come across some inaccurate information. Stick to the C.R.A.A.P. test, and you’ll recognize a reliable site when you encounter one!

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