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Evaluating sources

Is your information scholarly? (Text format)

 

Popular versus Scholarly

comparing information sources

Popular Scholarly

Intention

To inform and entertain a general audience

Intention

To present and/or report on original research

Appearance

Usually colourful, attractive; articles often have illustrations or photographs

Appearance

Generally contain few colourful photographs, may have charts and graphs as necessary

References

Rarely cites sources

References

Many sources cited

Scope

Articles are shorter, more superficial, often including generalised overview

Scope

Articles are longer, more in-depth and narrowly focused. Begins with an abstract

Peer-Review

Articles approved by editor

Peer-Review

Articles approved for publication after lengthy review

Author

Often journalists with little or no specialist knowledge

Author

Authors' credentials as an expert are explicitly stated

Language

Generally non-technical for a broad audience, unfamiliar terms are usually defined

Language

Technical terms used, assumption of audiences' highly specialised background knowledge

 

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