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Research Guides

Journalism and Mass Media (JAMM) 446 [Blevins]: Evaluate Sources

Evaluate Sources

It is important to evaluate the sources you find. You can use the RADAR Approach to ask questions about your sources and investigate them further.

R: Relevance Relevance is related to whether a source meets assignment requirements and supports your research topic or arguments.
  • Does the source meet your assignment’s requirements?
  • How does the information shared in the source relate to your research topic?
  • How would citing this source increase your understanding of your research topic?
A: Authority Authority is related to author credentials and expertise.
  • Who is the author? 
  • What are the author's qualifications? 
  • Does the author’s background or qualifications relate to the article’s topic?
D: Date Date is related to currency of information as well as whether you need a current or historic source.
  • When was the source published? 
  • Do you need a current or historic source? 
  • Has more recent information related to your topic been published?
A: Accuracy Accuracy is related to whether or not the provided information is supported by evidence or verified by other sources.
  • Is the information shared in the source supported by evidence? 
  • What type of source is this? 
  • Can you verify the information shared in another source? 
  • Does this source cite other sources?
R: Rationale or Reason Rationale is related to the purpose or goal of the source.
  • What is the author's goal? Do they want to inform, persuade, etc.? 
  • Does the author discuss alternative points of view? 
  • Who is the intended audience?