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Identifying Scholarly Sources: Home

Comparison of popular and scholarly sources, and the structure of a scholarly article

Types of Sources

Popular sources, such as newspapers and magazines, are written by journalists or others for general readers (for example, Time, Rolling Stone, and National Geographic).

Scholarly sources are written for the academic community, including experts and students, on topics that are typically footnoted and based on research (for example, American Literature or New England Review). Scholarly journals are sometimes referred to as "peer-reviewed," "refereed" or "academic."

Identifying Scholarly Sources

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

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