Many professors today insist upon very reliable sources, and sometimes internet sources are not so reliable. For very serious academic papers, especially in the sciences of any kind, professors will often insist upon peer-reviewed sources—meaning that the articles are “blind” reviewed by a committee who does not know who wrote the article (so no favoritism can be shown), the quotes and sources are verified, and only then is the article published. When trying to find the most reliable sources for a paper, there are two resources that are best—libraries and university websites’ library catalogues.
Also, be careful of Wikipedia, because they allow multiple users to work on one document, editing the research that came before it. Therefore, things often get misrepresented or mistakenly cited in the shuffle.
Scholarly periodicals are written by scholars in their field of study and always have footnotes and citations which evidence where they located their research. Scholarly articles will always have a bibliography or works cited and are published by universities and university associations. Scholarly articles will never be flash or have pictures either.
Non-scholarly articles can be published by anyone—anywhere—and they typically address a wide audience. Often , these articles contain glossy photos and are published by commercial publishers.
If you are a student, you have access to the most reliable scholarly sources for a research paper in the world. Sources like Ebscohost, Infotrac, and Lexis-Nexus are great academic search engines will yield the best research in multiple fields. The provide access to the most recent research listed first, which is great for students, especially in sciences of all kinds, where recent research is of primary importance.
Often the quickest, most sure-fire way of getting access to reliable scholarly information is to go to your school library. University librarians are specifically trained in locating the absolute best research for any paper and can help you turn your paper into a showcase of the best research in any subject.
Today, we have the advantage that there are many new online scholarly databases available to the general public now as well. New databases such as iSeek, refSeek, VirtualLRC, and the Internet Public Library are all great places to find scholarly resources from home as well as from the university.
Be first to know about our updates! Subscribe for our news.