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Kinesiology: Different Types of Sources

This is the subject guide for KIN students where they will find shortcuts to helpful library resources.

NOTE: when you conduct research for your poster presentation, you should not use secondary literature sources as evidence to support a claim. Since secondary sources discuss primary sources, it is best to find the primary literature source and use it as your evidence.

What are popular sources?

The Purpose (intent): Is to make money informing, entertaining, or persuading the general public on topics that are often but not always about current events in popular culture. 

Audience: General Public (non-expert)

Creator: Professional writers, journalists, freelance writers or creators that deal with a variety of topics regularly. The creator can be a scholarly expert in their field, but they are not sharing original research with their peers; instead they are informing the general public.

Here are some examples of popular source?


  • Purpose & Audience- is to sell stories to inform people about current events.  
  • Creator- is journalists who regularly write on a varies of topics.        

Smithsonian Magazine

  • Purpose & Audience- sells stories exploring historic topics to inform and entertain readers.

The Economist Magazine 

  • Purpose & Audience- sells stories meant to inform and entertain about current events impacting society and finances.
  • Creator - may be a journalist, or an economist asked to contribute their expert on a topic.  


  • Purpose & Audience- Are sold to students (non- experts) to help introduce principles and practices within the discipline.
  • Creator- is mostly like and expert on the subject matter.

Trade/Professional Publications -

  • Purpose & Audience-are publications written for experts, but not to share the results of original research. It is where experts/professionals informally share the current news in specific industries.
  • Creator- although the author is usually a professional in the field, the articles are not peer reviewed.

Trade Publications may share news of rigorous research; however, most of the article are either "think pieces," or use evidence drawn from personal experience or common knowledge not rigorous research.

Articles in trade publications  may be biased to support an industry or company.

Kinesiology Trade/Professional Publications:
Kinesiology Today magazine is quarterly publication of the American Kinesiology Association.  KT features informative articles on current research in the field of kinesiology


When would you use popular sources in your research?

At the beginning of your research when you are trying to learn more about topics. Textbooks explain basic principles and terminology which will help you when searching for scholarly articles.  Trade Publication, Magazines articles, and Newspaper stories can alert you to trends or recent discoveries you want to explore further. 

Scholarly sources are written by academics and other experts to contribute knowledge in a particular field by sharing new research findings, theories, analyses, insights, news, or summaries of current knowledge.

NOTE: There is sometimes a difference between scholarly articles and scholarly peer-reviewed articles (although many people use these terms interchangeably).

All peer-reviewed sources are scholarly, but not all scholarly sources are peer-reviewed.

  • Peer-review refers to the editorial process many scholarly journals use to ensure that the articles published in journals are high quality scholarship.

Here is an example of a peer-reviewed nursing journal:

Kinesiology Review is the official, peer-reviewed publication of the National Academy of Kinesiology and the American Kinesiology Association. 

Sports Biomechanics is the scientific journal of the International Society of Biomechanics in Sports (ISBS). The journal sets out to generate knowledge to improve human performance and reduce the incidence of injury, and to communicate this knowledge to scientists, coaches, clinicians, teachers, and participants.