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Anthropology Research Guide (Medlin)

This guide will help you find resources for your research assignments in Dr. Medlin's anthropology courses.

What are Scholarly Articles?

What are research-based Scholarly Articles?

Research-based scholarly articles are written by scholars, researchers, and experts in an academic or professional field to keep each other up to date on their research and to stimulate academic discussions. These articles can be found in scholarly or peer-reviewed journals. 

Because of their purpose, scholarly articles will usually have original research or in-depth analysis of a topic. They will be written in academic language and contain technical terms from that discipline. Scholarly articles will have bibliographies (sometimes called "references") listing all the materials the authors used in their research.

Tip: the bibliography can point you to other sources of information on the topic, which you may use for your paper.

Why do you need to know about Scholarly Articles?

You are required to find scholarly articles for your research papers in this class.  It is very common for college professors to require students to use scholarly articles when they assign research papers or essays in their classes.

Where can you find Scholarly Articles?

The easiest way to find scholarly articles is through Kirk Library's online article databases listed on the next page. Tip: you can limit your search results to show only full-text articles that are published in scholarly or peer-reviewed journals.  This will help you filter out articles that were not published in scholarly journals (e.g., those published in newspapers, magazines, etc.). 

How can I tell which articles are research-based Scholarly Articles?

Look for the following characteristics of a scholarly article. If you have any doubts, check with your professor to make sure.

  • Credentials of the author (i.e., is there a brief summary of the author's work experience or educational degrees or professional affiliations?)
  • Academic language (i.e., is it college level, with lots of technical terms or professional jargon?)
  • Is it reporting an original research study or doing an in-depth analysis of a topic?
  • Structure of the article (i.e., is there a formal structure in the paper, where the author uses section headings and sub-headings?)
  • Citations (i.e., are there in-text citations and does it have a bibliography at the end?)
  • Length of the article (i.e., is it lengthy, say more than 5 pages?)

Scholarly Anthropology Journals

Anatomy of a Scholarly Article

Anatomy of a Scholarly Article

Presented here are the first and last pages of a scholarly article. Click on the highlighted areas for clues about what to look for when identifying scholarly articles.