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POL 100

Scholarly vs. Popular

Scholarly Articles

Scholarly articles report on new research findings, critical analysis, and new theories. Scholarly articles can also be called academic or peer-reviewed articles. Peer-reviewed articles are evaluated by other experts in the field before publication. 


Popular Articles

Popular articles are written for the general public and usually do not require prior knowledge on the topic to understand. These articles are often written by journalists who may not have any background in the topic. 

Format Matters

Types of Resources

Information comes in many different formats and each type of resource has different uses:

Resource Type Details
Books and eBooks Thorough overview of a topic, good for background information and details. Your textbook is an example. 
Journal Articles Sometimes called academic or scholarly articles. Report on new research findings, critical analyses, and new ideas. Helpful for in-depth information on a topic. 
Newspaper and Magazines Short articles written for the general public. Often contain the most up-to-date information on a particular topic.
Websites Websites can contain any information. Remember that anyone can create and upload information to a website, so always evaluate websites to make sure they are reliable and acceptable for your assignment. 
Government Websites Specific information, news, and statistics about a particular country. Look at the URL of a website to see if it is a government site, for example Canadian government websites have; UK is; China is 

Always evaluate a resource to make sure it is appropriate for your assignment.