Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Physics/Chemistry Freshman Seminars Hammond Campus

Chemistry 194 Freshman Seminars Orientation

Jouranl Articles

In the sciences a journal article can be called a primary research article, scholarly article, or peer reviewed article. Regardless of the term used to describe the article there are always specific characteristics which allow you to identify it as scholarly information. Journal articles are different than magazine articles or newspaper articles because they are published in peer reviewed sources.

 

What is peer-reviewed?

This is a process a where recognized experts on a topic read and review the article before it is published in a journal. Most of the time the review process is anonymous and both the author and reviewer are not identified. The reason for this is to eliminate any personal bias in the review process. During the review process, the article will be evaluated on the accuracy of the information in the article, and reliability of the research methods used, and the overall quality of the research presented in the article.

The Peer review process answers the following questions:

Is the research valid and credible?

Are research design and methodology appropriate?

Is this research significant and the findings important?

Is the research original and new?

Does the paper properly cite the previous work done by others?

Should this work be published, improved or rejected?

 

Who is an expert?

 Experts are recognized authorities on a topic. You can identify someone’s authority by their education, credentials, and affiliation.

Look for academic degrees such as PhD. For scholarly articles the educational background and degrees of the author should be easy to find.

Look at where the author is employed. If it is a university this is a good sign. Generally, experts will be employed (affiliated) with some organization such as a university, corporation or government.

The author and their degrees are visible.

The author's affiliation and contact information will be visible

 

What does a Primary Research Article look like?

All primary research articles will share many of the same characteristics

There will usually be a paragraph labeled abstract at the beginning of the article. This abstract will be a brief summary of the article, and is intended to help the reader determine if the article is on the topic of interest. You can also see that the authors and their affiliations are clearly shown.

 

Article author information 

There will be citations throughout the article (marked in red) and especially a section often called literature review, that reviews all the previous published articles on this topic 

 Literature review section of article

 

You will see a section labeled methods where the research process is discussed.

 

Methods section of article

Data analysis and mathematics will be used in a research based article.

 

 

Example of Data analysis

An extensive bibliography of several pages citing related articles will follow the article

 

Bibliography section of paper 

These characteristics can be found in most peer-reviewed articles published. If you are having trouble finding these attributes in your articles, ask a librarian or your instructor.

Chemistry and Physics Databases

If you have trouble accessing this page because of a disability, please contact the library at libref@pnw.edu.