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Online Library Research Tutorial

Library tutorial on planning research, searching for and accessing online resources, and evaluating information

Module 4: Evaluating Sources

Evaluation Criteria

ACT UP Criteria

Developed by Dawn Stahura


  • Who wrote the resource?
  • What are their credentials/affiliations?
  • What experience do they have with the topic?


  • When was this resource written?
  • When was it published?
  • Do you need the most current information for your topic?


  • How accurate is this information?
  • Can you verify any of the claims in other sources?


  • Is the information presented to sway the audience to a particular point of view?
  • Resources, unless otherwise stated, should be impartial.


  • Check the privilege of the author 
  • Who is missing in this conversation?
  • Critically evaluate the subject terms associated with each resource you found. How are they described? What are the inherent biases?

5 Questions

  • WHO (expertise, experience, credentials of creator)
  • WHAT (relevance to your topic)
  • WHERE (well cited, verifiable) 
  • WHEN (current, up-to-date)
  • WHY (information to sell a product, promote POV, or inform)


Choose one of the criteria above to evaluate the sources you found in the previous activity. Would you still want to use the source for your project or assignment? Why or why not?       604-844-3840        520 East 1st Avenue, Vancouver, BC