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Boatwright Memorial Library

LLC 140: How to Write Everything: Evaluating Sources for Quality

Characteristics of Scholarly & Popular Articles:

Popular Articles Scholarly Articles
  •  Are often written by journalists or professional writers for a general audience rather than scholars
  • Informational, rather than original research
  • Uses language easily understood by general readers
  • Articles tend to be shorter
  • Rarely give full citations for a source -- may be referenced in the article, or not at all
  • Advertisements unrelated to contents -- glossy photos
  • Most written by or for academics, researchers or scholars
  •  Uses scholarly or technical language
  •  Tend to be longer articles about research or research findings
  •  Includes full citations for sources, extensive bibliographies or reference lists
  •  Are often refereed or peer reviewed
  • Few advertisements or color photos.  Advertisements related to contents, such as other academic publications or subscriptions
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