Answered By: Corrie Bott
Last Updated: Jun 23, 2015     Views: 101

Hello there, Thanks for your question! Using a library database is a good way to get scholarly or peer-reviewed articles. When searching in a database you can actually choose an option that will let you limit your search to just look for scholarly articles. In comparison, when you use the web, you never really know what you are going to get. Kind of like a box of chocolate! If you would like any help using our library databases, please just ask. We are here to help!

Here is a link to our evaluating source research guide: http://libguides.callutheran.edu/content.php?pid=369427&sid=3025781

Below is a list of certain criteria to help you determine a scholoarly source:

  • The best place to find scholarly resources is through a college, university, medical library or other educational library.  Academic libraries are designed to meet the needs of scholars making this the best place to look.
  • Rarely are magazine or trade journals scholarly. If you can find the periodical at your local book store,  it's probably intended for a more lay audience. 
  • Most web pages, even when they are developed by scholars, are not scholarly sources.
  • Self help books are NOT scholarly resources.
  • It is rare that a source without a clearly stated author is scholarly.
  • A scholarly resource is written for a scholarly audience. A key question to ask when determining if a source is scholarly is "who was the book/article written for?"
  • It should be reviewed and approved by a group of peers (peer-reviewed)

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