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Martha S. Grafton Library

Research 101

Books: Evaluate by publisher

Type

Definition

Example

Characteristics

Authority

University/Scholarly Presses

Published by universities

Oxford University Press

Peer-reviewed and written by scholars; written for academic audiences (students & professors)

High

Popular Presses

"Bestsellers"; published to make money

Little, Brown; Harper Collins

Written for popular audiences

Middle

Vanity Presses

Self-publishing presses-- People pay money to publish their own books.

iUniverse

No review process-- quality varies

Low

Ask yourself these questions about the AUTHOR(s):

  • What are the author's qualifications/credentials?

  • Academic degrees?

  • Prior experience with the material?

Examples

1. University/ scholarly Press

2. Popular Press

3. Vanity Press