Evaluating an author for credibility is a key skill. RAVEN is a useful tool to develop sound skills in source evaluation.
Use the RAVEN to evaluate the credibility of the author
R - Reputation
What is the reputation of the author, the sources, and the publication? Do past actions or lies indicate the author, sources, or publication may not be reliable? Is the author, soure, or publication in a position of authority?
A - Ability to observe
Is the author in a position that allows access to reliable evidence? If the article is about an event, did the author actually observe the event?
V - Vested Interest
Does the author have a personal stake in the topic or event? Would the author gain anything by lying? Would the author gain anything by tellng the truth?
E - Expertise
Does the author have specialized knowledge on the topic or event? Does the evidence come from a source that has expertise on the topic or event?
N - Neutrality
Is the author neutral about the issue or is bias evident? Is the source of the evidence neutral or biased?
(Image attribution: http://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/common-raven)
Despite the unfortunate acronym, the CRAAP Test is a useful test to evaluate a source: