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 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!
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.
The following resources are escpecially useful for general biology topics.
Health & Biochemistry
The 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: Medicine, Nutrition, Chemistry
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 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.
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.
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.