So your professor told you that you need to use ‘scholarly sources’ for your research assignment, but what does it mean? First of all, scholar sources
are different from popular sources. You’re probably more familiar with popular sources,
like magazines and newspapers. These resources are readily available
and can be consumed in quick doses. Scholarly sources,on the other hand,
are usually found in specialized publications such as scholarly journals and academic books. They are mostly accessible
through libraries and online databases and often contain very specialized information. How do you identify scholarly sources?
First, you want to look at who wrote it. Scholarly sources are written by researchers
and scholars, so people like professors who are affiliated with academic or research institutions.
Popular sources are usually written by journalists and other freelance writers, who may not be
specialists in the topics they’re writing about. Scholarly and popular sources also serve different purposes for different types of audience. Scholarly sources aim to present and share original research with other researchers and scholars, and they often contain technical jargon
and specialized vocabulary. Popular sources, in contrast, are usually written to inform, entertain or persuade the general public, so they tend to use everyday language
accessible to all types of readers. The use of references is another way you can differentiate scholarly sources from popular sources. Scholarly sources are usually connected to
other scholarly work, so it’s essential that the authors document the resources they
used in their own research. Popular sources don’t usually
include a list of references, even if they might refer to the
resources indirectly. Although it’s not always black and white, these are some good tips to keep in mind
when you’re looking for scholarly sources. If you’re still not sure, you can always
check with your professor!