Periodicals are publications that are regularly produced, which can mean a daily newspaper, a monthly magazine, or a quarterly journal. Popular publications are called magazines and scholarly publications are called journals. Newspapers are also popular publications.
Scholarly articles are considered better sources for research because they are written by experts and then reviewed and evaluated by other experts before they are published in a process called peer-review. Scholarly, peer-reviewed, referred, are all mean the same thing. These articles are higher quality, more accurate and authoritative, and the information can be trusted.
If you’re looking at print copies of periodicals it’s pretty easy to tell the difference between popular and scholarly sources. Magazines generally have slick covers and lots of ads and pictures
Journals have plainer covers, little or no ads, and include lots of charts and graphs
This tells you who the author is and if he or she is qualified to write on the subject of the article.
The abstract is a one to three paragraph summarization of the main points and findings of the article
All of these are lists of the author’s sources of information. This allows the reader to consult and verify the information that the author used so that you can determine the accuracy of the article for yourself.
There will often be specialized terminology or vocabulary showing that the author has in-depth knowledge of the subject
Popular articles are usually brief, one to five pages. Scholarly articles are usually much longer.
Popular & Scholarly Articles
Popular v. Scholarly Articles<br />Adrienne Button<br />firstname.lastname@example.org<br />B3035<br />678-407-5129<br />Reference Desk: 678-407-5064<br />
Things to look for in an electronic scholarly article<br />Author’s Credentials<br />Structure<br />Language<br />Length<br />
Look for:<br />Credentials, such as a PhD. or university affiliation<br />There may also be a brief biography of the author(s)<br />John Q. Erudite,<br />University of Indiana, Gary<br />Samantha S. Inquestor, <br />University of Transylvania<br />
Look for:<br />The abstract is a one to three paragraph summarization of the main points and findings of the article<br />Abstract<br />
Look for:<br />Specialized Language<br />There will often be specialized terminology or vocabulary showing that the author has in-depth knowledge of the subject<br />
Look for:<br />The length of the article will also indicate whether or not it is scholarly.<br />"US Slashes Swine Flu Vaccine Estimate." Clinical Infectious Diseases 49.8 (2009): 18-43. Academic Search Complete. EBSCO. Web. 20 Oct. 2009.<br />"60 Seconds to Swine Flu Freedom." New Scientist 203.2726 (2009): 7. Academic Search Complete. EBSCO. Web. 20 Oct. 2009.<br />
Look for…<br />Popular Magazines<br />Scholarly Journal Articles<br />Author's name may or may not be given; often a professional writer; may or may not have expertise in the subject area. <br />Usually a scholar or researcher with expertise in the subject area; Author's credentials and/or affiliation are given.<br />Author<br />General public; the interested non-specialist.<br />Audience<br />Other scholars, researchers and students.<br />Specialized terminology or jargon of the field; requires prior knowledge (or a good specialized dictionary!).<br />Vocabulary in general usage; understandable to most readers.<br />Language<br />Articles have a clearly-defined structure with an abstract, objective, methodology, analysis, results and conclusion. May include charts or graphs but rarely photographs or other illustrations<br />Informal organization: eye-catching type and formatting. Usually includes illustrations and photographs.<br />Appearance / <br />Organization<br />Rarely has a list of references, usually does not give complete information about sources of information.<br />Always has a list of references or bibliography; sources of quotes and facts are cited and can be verified.<br />References / Bibliography<br />
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