Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

CAS 203: Interpersonal Communication

Tiffany Petricini

The C. R. A. P. Method

The CRAP Method is a quick and easy-to-remember way to evaluate a source based on the following criteria: Currency, Reliability, Authority and Purpose/Point of View.  Here are some questions you can ask yourself about the resource to determine its value for your research.


  • How recent is the information?
  • If an electronic resource, how recently has it been updated?
  • Is this the most recent edition of the resource (especially for books)?
  • Is the age of the publication likely to affect the conclusions drawn by the author?


  • What type of information is provided in the resource?
  • Does this work provide you with high quality information?
  • Is your topic treated as the main subject, or is it peripheral?
  • Does the information support or disprove your thesis?
  • Is the resource useful to your research need?
  • Does the author provide references or sources for data or quotations?


  • Who is the author of the work, and what are his/her credentials?
  • Who published the work – a scholarly press, commercial publisher, or is it self-published?
  • If it is an online resource, can you determine who the author is?

Purpose/Point of View

  • What is the purpose of the resource?
  • Is the purpose clearly outlined in an introduction or foreword?
  • Is the work’s audience an expert in the field or a layperson?
  • Is the author/publisher trying to sell you something?
  • Does this work show signs of bias?
  • Is there a fair and balanced treatment of the subject matter?