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Biology & Biochemistry Resources

Welcome to the Biology and Biochemistry Research Guide! Within this guide, you will find information and links to Biology and Biochemistry-related resources that you may find useful for your classwork and research.

Find Articles

What is a journal article?

Journal articles are primarily written by scholars to communicate and share knowledge with the scientific community. Journal articles are appropriate to use when you want to cite information that comes from the experts.

There are several types of journal articles in the sciences: 

  • Original research articles share the results of experimental studies as well as their broader implications.
  • Short reports or letters are sometimes published in advance of a full original research article in order to communicate interesting or time-sensitive preliminary data.
  • Literature reviews are intended to provide a comprehensive synthesis of the known information on a topic. 
  • Case studies share specific experiences the authors had trying out new ideas or exploring new phenomena. 
  • Methodologies, Methods, and Protocols offer new ways to perform procedures, tests and assessments, or experiments.

Original research articles and literature reviews are probably the most common articles you will find. Which types of articles you use will depend on the type of information you are looking for. It may be appropriate to cite more than one article type in your own work.

Great places to start!

train engine icon Web of Science and Scopus are multidisciplinary article databases that allow you to navigate forward and backward through literature so that you can follow the train of scholarly conversation on a topic.

Biology Resources

a plant sprouting from a glass flaskThe following resources are escpecially useful for general biology topics.

Health & Biochemistry

a flask and a strand of DNAThe following databases may be especially useful for health, nutrition, and biochemistry topics. You may also be interested in exporing the resources on the following guides: MedicineNutritionChemistry

Original Research v. Literature Review

Most of the articles you will retrieve from our science databases will either be original research articles or literature reviews. Depending on your research goals or on the parameters of your assignment, you may need to be able to differentiate between these two article types.

Original Research

Original research articles are written to report experimental findings. Original research articles are also known as primary research because the authors have firsthand knowledge of the experment performed and took part it carrying it out. In other words, the authors are writing about their own research. The authors will describe the purpose of their experiment, the hypothesis, how they conducted their study, what results they found, and what the broader implications of their results may be. Original research articles will almost always include Methods and Results sections.

The following are examples of original research articles. Click on a title to open the article in a new tab.

Literature Review

A literature review provides a survey of the known information on a particular subject. The authors synthesize information from multiple sources rather than report on their own experimental research. The headings in a literature review article are topical in nature and do not typically include experimental methods.

The following are examples of literature review articles. Click on a title to open the article in a new tab. 

Peer Review

You may have heard your professor stipulate that articles you use in your papers should come from scholarly, peer-reviewed journals. Peer review is a vetting process for the publication of research and scholarship. This video explains how the process works and why it is important.

Video transcript

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