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Research @ Reynolds Libraries

2 c. Journals vs. magazines

Scholarly vs. Popular Periodicals

Created by Hartness Library, Community College of Vermont and Vermont Technical College

Distinguishing Scholarly Journals from Popular Magazines

Criteria

Scholarly Journals

Popular Magazines

Format/Style:

Serious/Formal

Many visuals/Informal

Graphics:

Contains graphs, tables, and charts with few photographs

Contains photographs, illustrations, and other graphics

Sources/

Documentation:

Sources cited with footnotes and/or bibliographies

Citations or bibliography rarely provided and original sources can be obscure

Authors/Audience

Identified

Scholarly or researchers in the field or discipline; intended for scholars or researchers in respective field or discipline

Not always identified

Publication’s staff or journalists; intended for a broad audience

Language:

Uses terminology or jargon specific to respective discipline

Simple

Purpose/Scope:

Informs, reports or makes available original research or experimentation

Entertains or persuades and occasionally utilized to sell products or services

Publishers:

Published by an academic press or professional organization

Published commercial/trade organizations for profit.

Advertisements:

Selective/Rare

Extensive

Examples:

Art Bulletin
Economic Journal
Journal of Marriage and the Family
Modern Fiction Studies

Ebony
Ms.
Newsweek
Parents

Adapted from: Kennedy, Mary Lynch and William J. Kennedy, eds.  “Chapter Nine:  Writing Research Papers.”  Writing in the Disciplines:  A Reader and Rhetoric for Academic Writers.  6th ed.  Upper Saddle River, NJ:  Pearson Prentice Hall, 2008.  286-332.

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