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.

Second Year Success

Advanced writing and research skills for 2nd year success

2nd year expectations for quality information sources

Quality Information Sources


All assignment information sources* must be high quality from second year.

1st Year Expectations 2nd Year Expectations
Uses subject readings and locates minimum required decent sources Capable of independently locating ample high-quality information sources

*Academic, scholarly or credible books, book chapters, journal articles, webpages, reports, etc.

Checklist for quality

At all times, you need to make sure you are finding good quality sources

The  CRAAP test is a useful checklist for evaluating sources using the following criteria:

  • Currency
  • Relevance
  • Authority
  • Accuracy
  • Purpose

Each criteria has a number of related questions - you can see these by clicking on the different tabs above. Use these as a guide to help you evaluate your sources.

This video gives a short introduction to using the CRAAP test to evaluate sources.

undefinedNew or old?

  • How old is the information?
  • Can you see when it was written and/or updated or revised?
  • Is there a chance it is no longer up to date?

For some subjects, the most recent, up to date information is essential. In others, historical information may be important too. Check your subject outline or with your lecturer to see how recent your assignment sources need to be.

undefinedIs the information what you really need?

  • How does it relate to your topic? It may mention the subject you are researching, but is it actually about that topic?
  • Is the information at the right level?
  • Is the information too general or simplified?

undefinedWho wrote it?

  • Who is the author or creator? This may be either a person's name or sometimes the name of an organization.
  • Are the authors recognized experts on the topic?
  • Are the author's credentials and contact details included?


undefinedIs the information reliable and correct?

  • Does the information fit with what you already know about the topic?
  • Does the information agree with other credible sources?
  • Is there a reference list?
  • Does the information seem too good to be true?

undefinedWhy does this information exist?

  • Who is the audience?
  • Is the information meant to inform, educate, persuade, sell something?
  • Is it fact or opinion?
  • Does the information present a balanced or a biased point of view?


Evaluating for quality

Evaluating for quality activities (10min)

Thinking head image.



You need to find information for an assignment. Your topic is:

Evaluate the pros and cons of essay assessment in higher education.

You have identified a number of information sources, but are they of sufficient quality to use in your assignment?

We acknowledge the Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the first inhabitants of the nation and acknowledge Traditional Owners of the lands where our staff and students, live, learn and work.Acknowledgement of Country