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Nursing: Evaluating Articles

What are scholarly articles?

What are scholarly articles? What's peer-reviewed? What's a refereed article? 

  • A scholarly (or peer-reviewed or refereed) article is an article that was written by experts in a particular discipline. These types of articles are reviewed by other experts in the field before they are published. A few examples are the American Journal of Psychology, Contemporary Literature, and Journal of Nutrition, Health, and Aging.

Why do I have to use scholarly articles in my paper?

  • Since scholarly articles have been reviewed by experts they are more reliable an credible than articles in popular resources. 
  • Scholarly articles also introduce you to research methods and practices for your field.
  • Scholarly articles have bibliographies, which can often provide you with related articles to further expand your search.

Evaluating Articles

As you read articles you found to support your research, you should consider the following criteria:

  • Purpose of the Article - Why was the article written? Is the author(s) discussing research, expressing an opinion, or trying to persuade you to do something?
  • Authority of the Article - Who is the author/publisher/sponsor of the article or research? Is the author qualified to write on this topic?
  • Currency of the Article - When was the information published? Does your topic require current information or older information?
  • Relevancy of the Article - Does the information relate to your topic? How well does this article meet your research needs?
  • Accuracy of the Article - Does the author provide information to support the article's claims? Has the information been peer-reviewed? Are there grammar and spelling errors?