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ENG 2100 - Research Writing and Argumentation: 3. Credible Sources

Scholarly Articles

New knowledge is often introduced through peer-reviewed research and published in scholarly journals.

Also known as academic, refereed, or peer-reviewed journals.

Examples: Camera Obscura, Foreign Affairs, Journal of Social & Clinical Psychology, Networks

Purpose & Value:  To report on original research or analysis in an academic field or discipline.  

Authors: Professors, researchers or scholars in an academic field or discipline. Credentials are always provided.

: Specialized or technical language of the academic  discipline or field.

Footnotes and/or bibliographies to document the sources of the author’s research.

Publishers:  Professional organizations, universities, research institutes, and  scholarly presses.

Appearance:  Lengthy articles often structured in the following format: abstract, literature review, methodology, results, conclusion, bibliography. graphs, charts or tables supporting the text of the article.


What if Wright State doesn't have the book I need?

Use OhioLINK to request a copy of the book from another library.

Wright State's copy of this book is checked out.  What do I do now?

Use OhioLINK to request a copy of the book from another library.

Looking for a Physical Book?

The WSU Libraries arrange books by Library of Congress (LC) call number. LC call numbers begin with letters of the alphabet. 

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Ebook Collections

Popular Sources

Also known as general interest magazines.  You'll find many of these in the aisle at the grocery store.

Examples: National Geographic,  Sports Illustrated, Time

Purpose & Value:  To provide current news and events to the general public with intention to entertain or persuade. Good source for popular culture.

Authors: Journalists or free-lance writers.

Language: Non-technical, often simple, language

Sources: May refer to sources but not cited in full.

Publishers: Commercial/trade publishers

Appearance:  Brief articles.  Photographs and illustrations. Lots of color. Extensive ads for general public.


Examples: Dayton Daily News, Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post

Purpose & Value:  To report on current news and events. Good for local and regional news, analysis and opinion on current events. 

Authors:  Journalists or free-lance writers.

Language: Language for general educated audience. 

Sources: Occasionally includes brief sources.

Publishers: Commercial/trade publishers

Appearance:  Brief articles. Photographs and illustrations to support article and attract reader. Some ads.

Primary Sources

If your topic has to do with an historical event or figure, you may need to find primary sources.

Some recommended resources for finding primary sources are available on this page.

Historical Newspapers

Wright State University Special Collections & Archives

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These are just a few examples of the collections available at the Wright State University Special Collections & Archives.

Ask Us

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Find It Button

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How do I get the full text of the article?

When searching for journal articles, you will notice the Find it button on many of your search results. Clicking on the Find it button will open a menu page which will show you where you can find the full-text of the article.

What are the advantages of using newspaper and magazine articles as sources?

News and magazine articles give you a journalist's perspective including the facts of who, what, where, when, why and how. 

Why is it important to use a variety of sources?

When you consult different kinds of sources, you discover the whole conversation about a topic.  With news and magazine articles, for example, you get a journalist's perspective including the facts of who, what, where, when, why and how.  But a book about a topic might be written by an expert and includes some history and analysis of a topic. 

Using good sources also lends credibility to your paper.

Use Caution When Searching the Web

The World Wide Web is full of wonderful resources.  Use caution, though, when searching.  Anyone with a computer can publish something on the internet.  Be sure that the web sites and other resources you find are credible.  See the evaluation section for more information about how to be more skeptical when using Web Sites as sources.