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OM 300: Peer-Reviewed vs Scholarly Literature

A guide to resources for OM 300 research assignments

Popular Literature vs Scholarly LIterature

For a more in-depth look at characteristics of different types of publications, please visit this helpful page from Rutgers University Libraries.

Features of Popular Resources

  • Length: Shorter articles, providing broader overviews of topics.
  • Authorship: Author is usually a staff writer or a journalist. Name and credentials are often not provided. 
  • Language/Audience: Written in non-technical language for anyone to understand.
  • Format/Structure: Articles do not neccessarily follow a specific format or structure. 
  • Special Features: Illustrations with glossy or color photographs, usually for advertising purposes. 
  • Editors: Articles are not evaluated by experts in the field, but by editors on a staff.  
  • Credits:  A bibliography (works cited) is usually not provided, although names of reports or references may be mentioned in the text.


From University of Texas at Austin (USTA) Libraries:

National Geographic Magazine U.S. Delivery

Features of Scholarly Resources

  • Length: Longer articles, porviding in-depth analysis of topics.
  • Authorship: Author usually is an expert or specialist in field. Name and credentials always provided.
  • Language/Audience: Written in the jargon of the field for scholarly readers (professors, researchers, or students).
  • Format/Structure: Articles are usually more structured and may include these sections: abstract, literature review, results, conclusion, bibliography.
  • Special Features: Illustrations that support the text, such as tables of statistics, graphs, maps, or photographs.
  • Editors: Articles are usually reviewed and critically evaluated by a board of experts in the field. Articles that have gone through this process are referred to as "peer-reviewed", "juried", or "refereed". 
  • Credits: A bibliography (works ctied) and/or footnotes are always provided to document research thoroughly. 


From University of Texas at Austin (USTA) Libraries: