Skip to main content
Li Ka Shing Library

Fake vs. Real: Identifying & Evaluating Information Sources: Evaluating Sources

This guide provides you with resources to help you differentiate between fake news and genuine sources of news and information.

Evaluating Information: The CRAP Test

It is crucial to evaluate and verify your sources before sharing them, using them in your assignments or projects or communicating them to others. One way of evaluating your source is to use the CRAP test. This test uses four main criteria, namely Currency, Reliability, Authority and Purpose/ Point of View to determine if a source is reliable or not.  

The CRAP Test

Currency

•How recent is the information?
•How recently has the website been updated?
•Is it current enough for your topic?
 

Reliability

•What kind of information is included in the resource?
•Is content of the resource primarily opinion?  Is it balanced?
•Does the creator provide references or sources for data or quotations?
 

Authority

•Who is the creator or author?
•What are the credentials? Can you find any information about the author's background?
•Who is the published or sponsor?
•Are they reputable?
•What is the publisher's interest (if any) in this information?
•Are there advertisements on the website? If so, are they cleared marked?
 

Purpose/Point of View

•Is this fact or opinion? Does the author list sources or cite references?
•Is it biased? Does the author seem to be trying to push an agenda or particular side?
•Is the creator/author trying to sell you something? If so, is it clearly stated?

Test Yourself!

Try one of these quizzes to see how well you are able to distinguish real news and articles from the fake ones.

Know the Difference

Know the difference between Misinformation, Disinformation and Propaganda

Misinformation

/ˌmɪsɪnfəˈmeɪʃ(ə)n/

noun

noun: misinformation

​Misinformation is information that is false, but the person who is disseminating it believes that it is true. It is unintentionally false. 

synonyms:

disinformation, false information, misleading information, deception;

 

Disinformation

/ˌdɪsɪnfəˈmeɪʃ(ə)n

noun

noun: disinformation

Disinformation is information that is false, and the person who is disseminating it knows it is false. It is a deliberate, intentional lie. 

"the entire Western intelligence system had been systematically manipulated with clever disinformation"

 

Propaganda

/prɒpəˈɡandə/

noun

noun: propaganda

information, especially of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote a political cause or point of view.

"he was charged with distributing enemy propaganda"

synonyms:

information, promotion, advertising, advertisement, publicity, advocacy;

The use of electronic resources must comply with the Appropriate Use of Electronic Resources Policy and Singapore Management University Acceptable Use Policy