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ENG 101: A Modest Proposal

Popular vs. Scholarly Articles

You will be working with different types of articles for this assignment. The following chart will give some comparisons between popular and scholarly articles. Magazines and newspapers contain popular articles and journals contain scholarly articles. Both types of articles can be located within the library databases. 

Depending on which database you are searching, they may call scholarly articles by different names.

Scholary = Peer Reviewed = Academic Journals




Sports Illustrated


Arizona Republic

New York Times

Wall Street Journal


English Today

Rhetoric Society Quarterly

American Literary History





  • Current events and news
  • Brief, factual information
  • Short articles
  • Interviews
  • News stories
  • Current information
  • Local and regional focus
  • Analysis and opinion of current events
  • Reports of original research
  • In-depth analysis of topics
  • Lengthy articles
  • Statistical information
Authors Journalists Journalists

Researchers, academics, scholars

Sources Original sources can be obscure Sources are rarely cited in full

Footnotes and bibliographies

Publishers Commercial / trade publisher Commercial / trade publisher Professional organizations, universities, research institutes and scholarly presses
  • Many graphics and photos
  • Glossy ads
  • Photos, graphics and charts
  • Many ads
  • Graphs, charts and tables
  • Ads are very rare


Watch: Scholarly Sources vs. Popular Sources