Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Identifying Scholarly Journals

How to recognize a scholarly journal from a trade magazine or a popular magazine

Definitions

Webster's Third International Dictionary defines scholarly as:

  • concerned with academic study, especially research,

  • exhibiting the methods and attitudes of a scholar, and

  • having the manner and appearance of a scholar.

Substantive is defined as having a solid base, being substantial.

Popular means fit for, or reflecting the taste and intelligence of, the people at large.

Introduction

Journals and magazines are important sources for up-to-date information in all subjects and disciplines. With a large and diverse periodicals collection available, it can be hard to distinguish between the various levels of scholarship found in the collection. In this guide we have divided the criteria for periodical literature into three categories:

Scholarly Journals

News/General Interest Publications

Popular Magazines

Keep these definitions in mind and know that none of the lines drawn between types of journals can ever be totally clear cut.  To help with the confusion, visit the Side-by-Side Comparisons page for examples.

Identifying Scholarly Articles

Visit us on Facebook

Visit us on Twitter

 Rockhurst University Library · 1100 Rockhurst Road · Kansas City, MO 64110 · 816-501-4116