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SHB PHY115: Types of Sources

When do I use each type?

Popular
  • For up-to-date information or current events
  • For information or opinions about popular culture
  • For finding key ideas, important dates or concepts
  • For general, background information on a topic

Trade/Professional

  • For topics of interest to those in a particular trade or profession
  • For finding current trends in a particular industry
  • For subject-specific background information
Scholarly
  • For in-depth information and research
  • For finding other research sources
  • For finding what has been studied on your topic

Scholarly format

Anatomy of a Scholarly Article

Identifying popular, trade & scholarly sources

 

Author(s)

Format

 Language/vocabulary 

Graphics

Audience

Popular

Identified sometimes

Often a journalist

No prescribed format

Length varies

Uses everyday language

Graphics/photos designed to draw interest

Of interest to a wide, general audience

 Trade/Professional 

Identified usually

Credentials sometimes (~Professional)

No prescribed format

Length varies

Common language or language of the trade

Graphics/photos designed to draw interest

Of interest to those employed in or following the field

     Scholarly      (peer-reviewed)

Always identified

Academic credentials usually present

Usually: abstract, intro, discussion, references

Lengthy

More scholarly language

Detailed charts or graphs to show data, research findings

Of interest to other scholars

Narrow focus