How can I determine whether a resource is credible and reliable?


One technique that you can use to help determine whether a resource is credible, reliable, and timely is the PROVEN source evaluation process:

Purpose:  How and why was the source created.

Relevance:  The value of the source to your needs.

Objectivity:  The reasonableness and completeness of the information.

Verifiability:  The accuracy and truthfulness of the information.

Expertise:  The authority of the authors and the source.

Newness:  The age of the information.

Other things to keep in mind as you research and use information-- particularly information found on the internet-- is to:

  • Be sure that you understand the information and the context before you use it in your research paper.  Does the information fit your need and support your position?
  • Be aware of your own personal points of view and biases as you consume information.
  • Check the validity of the information by consulting other reputable sources to confirm that the information is reliable and accurate.  This is called "lateral reading."
  • If appropriate, consult fact checkers for additional verification of accuracy:

View the document below for a series of questions that you can use to help you evaluate resources for your research assignment.

Carey, E. (2018, June 18). P. R. O. V. E. N. source evaluation. Retrieved from

  • Last Updated Sep 19, 2018
  • Views 3905
  • Answered By Suzanne Schriefer, Librarian

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