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Martha S. Grafton Library

Research 101

Articles: Evaluate based on Scholarly vs. Popular




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Usually written by an scholar or a researcher in the field. Credentials and/or affiliation are given.


Often a professional writer with no expertise in the subject area. Author's name may or may not be given.

Other scholars, researchers and students.


The general public; those interested without a specialty in the subject

Specialized terminology or jargon of the field; requires prior knowledge or a dictionary.


General vocabulary. Understandable to most readers.

Articles have a defined structure with an abstract, objective, methodology, results, analysis, conclusion and references.



Informal organization, usually eye catching. Typically contains organization and photographs.

Always provides a list of references or a bibliography. Sources are cited and can be verified.

References/ Bibliography

Rarely has a list of references, but can include sources listed under a section titled "more to explore" or "further reading", etc. Usually does not give complete information about sources.

Articles are peer-reviewed before publication by a panel of researchers or an editor for accuracy, methodology and importance.



Articles are usually not evaluated by experts. Non-peer reviewed resources must be carefully examined for accuracy and relevance.

Effect of Caffeine on Prospective and Retrospective Duration Judgments


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