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Scholarly vs. Popular Magazines: Home


Periodicals are print sources that are published weekly, monthly or quarterly, such as magazines, newspapers and journals.

Trade Journals

Trade Journals are periodicals, magazines or publications printed with the intention of marketing to a specific industry or type of trade/business. Trade journals contain heavy advertising content focused on the industry with very little "general audience" advertising. They also contain industry-specific job notices. Many trade publications can also be considered news magazines with a specific focus.

Scholarly Journals & Popular Magazines

Scholarly journals contain articles written by professionals in the field. For example, The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) is written by doctors or nurses in the medical profession. These authors usually have the credentials or degrees earned in that specific field.  The articles may be original research or an addition to a previous author's research.  Articles may be illustrated with graphs, tables, charts, and will have a list of references at the end.  Most materials submitted to a scholarly journal are peer reviewed. Peer reviewed materials are articles that other experts have read and then suggested revisions to the author before the final version is accepted for publication.

Popular magazines are not in-depth enough to be scholarly. The magazine may have an area of interest.  For instance, Redbook is devoted to women and Newsweek is a news magazine, but the articles are intended as overviews. In addition, authors may or may not be named and although illustrations or charts may be included, there usually is not a bibliography present to support the information.




Community College Journal


Good Housekeeping

Harvard Business Review



Journal of American History



American Philosophical Association


The Shakespeare Web

Chronicle of Higher Education


National Enquirer Online

English Criticism


Reader' Digest World


Newspapers are published daily, weekly or monthly. Editorials focus on commentary or opinion while the news articles are presented as factual information. Newspapers may have a viewpoint that echoes their publisher or the audience they serve.