What is a scholarly article?
Professors are always telling students to look for scholarly or research journal articles for their papers. For every field of research and study, there are scholarly journals.
To have an article published in a scholarly journal, the author/researcher must submit the article for review by a group of peers, other experts in the field.
This PEER REVIEWING process assures that what gets published is of high quality, that the research was done well, that the conclusions were valid, and so on.
Researchers and professors know the journals in their field. Novice researchers, like you, however, have to learn how to identify appropriate scholarly journals.
Your professors will often refer to reports of research as a PRIMARY source of information.
This is the first, official, published report about this study. That is what makes it PRIMARY.
Later on, when other people refer to this study or write about it in some way, those are SECONDARY sources.
Example of a research article:
Notice that the article includes an abstract, a literature review, a section on methodology, discussion, and conclusion.
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