What's the difference between a popular article and a scholarly one? And I keep seeing the terms "scholarly" and "peer-reviewed." Do they mean the same thing?
A popular article is one that is found in a magazine. It has the following characteristics:
Examples of Popular Magazines:
A scholarly article is found in a journal and has the following characteristics:
Examples of Scholarly Journals:
Note: There are some hybrids out there that blur the lines between magazines and scholarly journals. Scientific American and Atlantic Monthly, for example, do not fit well into either category.
The instructor for my course has specified that I use peer-reviewed articles. Does that mean a scholarly article?
Yes, but peer-reviewed articles are a special subset of scholarly articles. Peer review is an editorial process many scholarly journals use to ensure that the articles published in journals are high-quality scholarship. These articles (also called refereed articles) are reviewed by an editor and other specialists before being accepted for publication.
You can filter search results in the CORE Library by "peer-reviewed." This ensures that every article in a search has gone through this special review process.
The instructor has not specified what kinds of information I should use. What do I do?
Both popular and scholarly articles can be good sources for your work. When selecting information, think about how you intend to use the information.
Probably the best thing to do is ask your instructor what s/he requires for the assignment.
This guide explains different research source types (primary, secondary and tertiary) and presents CORE and Internet resources exemplifying each. Often, links to illustrations and examples supportive of learning are provided.
OPTION: Watch a video summary HERE.
Source: The David L. Rice Library
In this guide, topic sections, each with its own tab above, are as follows:
IMPORTANT NOTE: What is considered a primary, secondary or tertiary source can vary, depending on the discipline. Examples and further explanation follow.
To those studying history:
PRIMARY SOURCE: Ben Franklin's letters
Franklin wrote in his diary over 200 years ago. It's an original document dating from Franklin's time. It's a PRIMARY source. The biography of Franklin was written two centuries later. It's a SECONDARY source, possibly based in part on primary sources. The short encyclopedia distills any number of primary and secondary sources into a short survey article on Franklin, making it a TERTIARY source.
To those studying art:
PRIMARY SOURCE: A painting by Renoir
The painting is an original work, done by Renoir in his time, making it a PRIMARY source. Written many years later, the contemporary book commenting on Renoir's art is a SECONDARY source. The art encyclopedia has many articles, One article, which draws from many sources, is about Renoir. This encyclopedia is a TERTIARY source.