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Information Evaluation: Peer Review

Before choosing a source for your research paper, it must be evaluated. Here are some tools to help you understand different types of sources and how to evaluate them.

Finding Peer-Reviewed Sources

Peer-reviewed journals have been scrutinized by leading professionals with a specific field, making them the most reliable sources for classes.

Best Databases for Peer Review Articles

Peer Review

Things to remember about peer review articles:

1. Typically written by professors, scholars, professional researchers or experts in the field

2. Before publication, articles are scrutinized by other experts in the same field (that's why we call it "peer review")

3. Because of this rigorous review process, peer review articles are considered to be among the most authoritative and reliable sources you can choose for your research paper or project

4. Peer reviewed articles usually have a narrow focus, and often report the results of a research study. You must think critically and carefully about how such an article applies to your topic. 

EXAMPLE: Your professor assigns a research paper on "nature vs. nurture," and you find an article in EBSCO called "Nature vs. nurture: two brothers with schizophrenia" from a journal called Perspectives in Psychiatric Care. At first, you might think "But I'm not writing about schizophrenia...?"  

Be sure to consider that peer review articles with a very specific research focus can provide excellent examples or case studies to support the arguments or explanations within your research paper.

 

Learn more: What is a Scholarly Journal Article?

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