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Early College Experience (ECE) Guide — Reading and Interpreting Sources

Guide to UConn Library's resources for members of the UConn ECE community

Structure of a Scholarly Article

scholarly article

What might you find in a scholarly article? Click on the image to learn more. 

Title: what the article is about

Authors and affiliations: the writer of the article and the professional affiliations. The credentials may appear below the name or in a footnote.

Abstract: brief summary of the article. Gives you a general understanding before you read the whole thing.

Introduction: general overview of the research topic or problem

Literature Review: what others have found on the same topic

Methods: information about how the authors conducted their research

Results: key findings of the author's research

Discussion/Conclusion: summary of the results or findings

References: Citations to publications by other authors mentioned in the article

Reading Scientific Articles

Scientific articles follow a common structure description/overview


parts of




BEAM: How to Use a Source

This method was created to help you think about different sources and how you might put them all together for your final product.

Background Sources

  • Sources accepted as unquestionable fact, undisputed information
  • Examples: dictionaries, encyclopedias, and other reference materials

Exhibits or Evidence Sources

  • Sources used for explication, analysis, or interpretation
  • Examples: often primary sources like newspapers, primary research articles, data

Argument  Sources

  • Sources from other authors you are agreeing with, disagreeing with, or building upon
  • Examples: scholarly articles or books

Method Sources

  • Sources an author follows to determine how they are doing their research. Key terms, a specific procedure, model or perspective
  • Examples: textbooks, literature reviews with commentary on research


Bizup, Joseph. "BEAM: A Rhetorical Vocabulary for Teaching Research-Based Writing." Rhetoric Review 27, no. 1 (2008): 72-86. doi:10.1080/07350190701738858