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ENG 101: Composition I (Woodbery): Research

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Research


Overwhelmed by the number of search results in GALILEO?
Try searching one of these subject-specific databases!

Library of Congress Call Numbers

PN
41
.H355
2009

The TU Library utilizes the Library of Congress Classification System.
Look on an item's spine to find its call number.

PE | English Language

PN | Literature (General)

PQ | French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese Literature

PR | English Literature [British, Australian, Canadian, etc.]

PS | American Literature

PS | American Literature

PT | German, Dutch, Scandinavian, Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, etc. Literature

PZ | Fiction and Juvenile Belles Lettres [Childrens', Young Adult, etc.]

What is a scholarly (peer-reviewed) journal?

"Peer review [is the] process whereby experts in a given field help judge the value of a relevant work or ideas that they were not part of creating. The primary function of peer review is gatekeeping--selecting the best from a pool of submissions. It also serves, however, as a source of constructive criticism, whereby expert feedback by peers can be taken into account to improve ideas, research proposals, and papers."

(Encyclopedia Britannica | "Peer Review")

Therefore, a scholarly (peer-reviewed) journal contains articles that have not only been written by experts in a particular field but have also been thoroughly reviewed, revised, and often reviewed (and revised) again by other experts in that same field until they've been accepted for publication. Through publication those scholarly (peer-reviewed) journal articles receive acknowledgement as now belonging to the knowledge-base for their specific fields of study.

What distinguishes a scholarly (peer-reviewed) journal from a popular magazine?

For more detailed information, please see the table below, but scholarly (peer-reviewed) journals typically have the following features:

  • Credentialed author with subject expertise;
  • Structured layout (abstract, author credentials/biography, bibliography, etc.);
  • Original academic content containing specialized terminology intended for others in the field of study;
  • Rigorous peer-review/editing process that evaluates content, format, and style;
  • References that verify quotes and facts;
  • Few advertisements or photographs.

How do I find scholarly (peer-reviewed) journals?

"GALILEO! GALILEO! GALILEO! GALILEO! GALILEO! Figaro! Magnifico!"
(Queen | "Bohemian Rhapsody")

After performing a search in GALILEO, make sure that you click on the checkbox to the left of the Scholarly (Peer Reviewed) Journals option underneath Limit To on the left-hand side of the screen in order to filter out resources that haven't been peer-reviewed.

If you only want to search through resources that the TU Library currently has full text access to, make sure that you also click on the checkbox to the left of the Full Text option. Otherwise, some of the resources in your results list might be citations/abstracts that don't have the actual journal article attached to them.

And don't forget to get your citation(s) from GALILEO!

Google Scholar

Google Scholar is another valuable option for researching scholarly (peer-reviewed) journal articles.

Google Scholar Search

As your information literacy skills improve, you'll be better able to determine for yourself whether a resource that you come across has been peer reviewed or otherwise contains credible, worthwhile information--no matter how you might have stumbled upon it.

Scholarly Journals vs. Popular Magazines

Criteria Scholarly Journal Popular Magazine
Example
Content In-depth, primary account of original findings written by the researcher(s); very specific information, with the goal of scholarly communication. Secondary discussion of someone else's research; may include personal narrative or opinion; general information, purpose is to entertain or inform.
Author Author's credentials are provided; usually a scholar or specialist with subject expertise. Author is frequently a journalist paid to write articles, may or may not have subject expertise.
Audience Scholars, researchers, and students. General public; the interested non-specialist.
Language Specialized terminology or jargon of the field; requires expertise in subject area. Vocabulary in general usage; easily understandable to most readers.
Graphics Graphs, charts, and tables; very few advertisements and photographs. Graphs, charts and tables; lots of glossy advertisements and photographs.
Layout & Organization Structured; includes the article abstract, goals and objectives, methodology, results (evidence), discussion, conclusion, and bibliography. Informal; may include non-standard formatting. May not present supporting evidence or a conclusion.
Accountability Articles are evaluated by peer-reviewers* or referees who are experts in the field; edited for content, format, and style. Articles are evaluated by editorial staff, not experts in the field; edited for format and style.
References Required. Quotes and facts are verifiable. Rare. Little, if any, information about source materials is given.
Other Examples Annals of Mathematics, Journal of Abnormal Psychology, History of Education Quarterly, Almost anything with Journal in the title.

Time, Newsweek, The Nation, The Economist

(Modified table from Tufts)

Moody, Eli. "Scholarly vs. Popular Periodicals." YouTube, uploaded by Vanderbilt University, 8 Sept. 2017, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysPDZGj3cRA.