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Martha S. Grafton Library

Research 101

Books

The best way to evaluate a source is to read it an evaluate the information, but for books, looking at the publisher is a good shortcut. 

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