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Research Help: Journal Articles

Articles: evaluate based on Scholarly vs. Popular


Scholarly and 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; interested amateurs

Specialized terminology or jargon; requires prior knowledge.


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 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, if they do, they usually do not give complete information about sources.

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



No peer-review process, review process is through a non-expert editor.

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