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Honors Nursing: Evaluating Web Sites

Evaluating Health Web Sites

Content on the Internet is unregulated; anyone can publish anything on the Internet. There is sound medical information on the Internet along with dangerous information. You need to be able to tell the difference.

Ask yourself the following:

  1. Why did the person create the page?                                    
  2. What's in it for them?                                                                 
  3. Are they trying to sell me something?

Criteria for Evaluating Web Sites

Criteria for evaluating information from the web:

Relevance -  Is the content of the item suitable for your research?

Timeliness - Is the information provided in the article or book up-to-date?

Reliability - Is the information presented accurate and dependable?

Validity - From what sources were the facts gathered?

Credibility - What are the author’s credentials? Is the author an expert in the field?

Purpose - What is the purpose of the source? Why was this item written: to persuade; to reinforce; to preach to the choir; to provide an overview; to generate controversy and provoke? 

Assessing the Quality of Health Information on the Internet

     What is the CRAAP Test?

     CRAAP is an acronym for Currency, Relevance, Authority, Accuracy, and Purpose. Use the CRAAP Test to evaluate your sources.

  • Currency - recent, regulary updated
  • Relevance - on topic, intended audience
  • Authority - author and credentials identified
  • Accuracy - verifiable information, bias
  • Purpose - goal of the website/publisher

    Evaluating Sources:  Using the CRAAP Test



Thinking Critically About Health Web Sites