Skip to Main Content

FYSP 068 - Minds, Machines, and God: Reading Scholarly Articles

What are Scholarly Articles?

Scholarly articles are published in journals intended for audiences in specific academic disciplines.

Many, but not all, scholarly journals are peer-reviewed.

Prior to publication, peer-reviewed articles are submitted to experts in the field who offer feedback to the author.  Because the reviewers specialize in the same scholarly area as the author, they are considered the author’s peers (hence “peer review”).

Not all content in a scholarly journal is peer-reviewed.  Their can be editorial essays and often book reviews.

Basic Types of Scholarly Articles

Research:  An article that reports on original research, such as an experiment, analysis of data, a creative work, or historical event. 

Theoretical:  An article that contributes to the theoretical foundations of a field, providing explanations for phenomena or frameworks to guide the analysis of evidence.

Review:  An article that summarizes the results of many original articles investigating similar topics. Might include meta-analysis to statistically compare data from multiple studies

Parts of Scholarly Articles - not all articles will have all of these parts!


Brief summary of the article.
Introduction States the topic, purpose, and argument of the article.
Methods Mentions steps taken to support argument of the article.
Results/Findings Shares results of the research.
Discussion Analyzes and talks about the findings of the research.
Conclusion Synthesizes the article's findings and argument.
References List of cited sources.