Currently many college professors require that students use scholarly information for research papers instead of searching the Internet or World Wide Web through Yahoo or Google.
Definition of “Scholarly”
“What is scholarly information; and how do you find it,” you ask?
Most scholarly – or “peer-reviewed,” or “juried” sources of information have the following elements:
- Lengthy articles (i.e., more than seven pages) or texts written by experts or scholars for an expert, academic audience (faculty, graduate students, researchers) in a particular field.
- Employ a formal, scholarly or technical writing style utilizing a vocabulary that requires some degree of subject knowledge.
- The author’s expertise is usually given near the beginning or at the end of the article or book and an abstract is included with journal articles.
- Sources are credited in footnotes and/or a bibliography.
- Often reviewed by an author’s peers (hence the term “peer-reviewed”) before publication. It is important to note that the peers referred to here are other scholars or academic experts studying the same academic subject as the author.
- Purpose of the publication is to share information within the subject field. Articles and books are based on original research and experimentation in science or social science or are the writings, criticism and reviews of scholars in the humanities.
- Published by academic presses, professional associations, or universities. Any advertisements are usually for books, journals, or conferences.
*Thanks to the College of Mount Saint Vincent’s library website for sharing this information.
Some Examples of Scholarly Resources
Bennett, D. Scott & Allan C. Stam. (2004). The behavioral origins of war. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.
Vig, Norman J. and Michael E. Kraft (Eds.) (2006). Environmental policy: new directions for the twenty-first century. Washington, D.C.: CQ Press.
Notice that two of the three journals (above) use the term “studies” in their titles – this is a strong hint that the journals are scholarly.
Some Examples of Popular Magazines
- The four popular magazines use full-color photography.
- Popular magazines and journals include commercial product advertisements that are not present in scholarly journals.