Look for a Subject Guide on the discipline of your topic. Explore multiple guides when a topic is multidisciplinary.
Relevant Subject Guides include
Academic Journals vs. Popular Magazines and Newspapers - do you know the difference? Check in Ulrich's Global Serial Directory to be sure!
Why use journals?
- They are more up-to-date than most books.
- They are “peer reviewed” by other scholars in the field who check for academic integrity.
- They are concise and focused on a specific aspect of a topic.
- Every article will contain cited references that appear as footnotes and/or bibliographies.
- Most are now in online and accessible anytime and from off campus.
For best results do a search using keywords or phrases in a subject database to find references to scholarly articles.
When a database gives you an option, always limit to scholarly (or academic or peer reviewed) journals.
Use the suggested databases below to find scholarly journal articles.
These are secondary sources:
Also consult multidisciplinary databases such as:
Good to know:
- Within a database, limit your search to scholarly articles when it is appropriate to disregard other resources.
- Never limit to full-text only as we may subscribe to the journal you find from another vendor. Use the Get it! icon to search for the full text when it is not immediately available.
- Use available options to search more than one database at a time.
- Look for the option to set up an RSS feed or to Create an Alert. You are then notified when a new entry is added to the database that meets your search criteria.
- Use the Interlibrary Loans RACER form to request items not held at Carleton’s library.