To decide if a book is helpful, you need ask yourself some questions about the source and how it suits your purposes. Here are two different approaches that can be used effectively.

1. CRAAP test: Question your source.

 Currency: How recent is this information?  Has it been updated?  Is it current enough for your topic?

 Reliability: Is it fact or opinion?  Are there references to the sources of information?

 Authority: Who is the creator or author? What are the author's credentials?  Who is the publisher?  

  Accuracy: Where does the information come from? Is the information supported by evidence?

 Purpose: Is it biased?  Are they trying to sell you something - either a product or an idea?

2. Reflective questions: Question yourself. Is the book relevant to you? Does it suit your needs? Will this source make your paper/presentation better? Could you use this source in a helpful way?

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The CRAAP test was developed by CSU, Chico Library