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What is Peer Review?

Peer Review is a process that journals use to ensure the articles they publish represent the best scholarship currently available. When an article is submitted to a peer reviewed journal, the editors send it out to other scholars in the same field (the author's peers) to get their opinion on the quality of the scholarship, its relevance to the field, its appropriateness for the journal, etc.

Peer review process chart

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Popular, Scholarly, and Trade Journals

Scholarly vs. Popular Periodicals: How to Tell the Difference

A periodical is any publication that is published multiple times (periodically). Periodicals include materials such as popular magazines, scholarly journals, and newspapers. Often popular periodicals are called magazines and scholarly periodicals are called journals.

Here are some guidelines to help you distinguish between the three major kinds of periodicals found in college libraries.

  Scholarly Popular Trade
Example Cover Cover of journal of Food and science technology Picture of bon appetit magazine Picture of food management journal/magazine

Scholars, researchers

Credentials and affiliations are given

Journalists, staff writers

Credentials are rarely given

Staff writers, industry specialists, or vendor representatives.
Content Original research, the results of a study, or a review of scholarly research. Follows scholarly format: abstract, literature review, methodology, results, conclusion, bibliography Informative, entertaining, secondary information. No specific format is followed. Articles about a certain business or industry
References List of references or bibliography included. In-text citations, footnotes are provided References generally are not provided Sometimes provides references
Editors Editors are experts in the field. Their affiliations are given Editors are staff members, journalists, not scholars Professional editors.
Audience Other scholars, researchers, students General public Members of a specific business, industry, or organization
Appearance Sober, serious. May include charts, graphs, statistics Attractive, eye-catching, with photographs and illustrations. Glossy paper. Pictures and illustrations in color.
Length Lengthy Shorter. Typically 1-5 pages. Shorter. Typically 1-5 pages.

Journal of Food Science and Technology; American Historical Review

Time; Bon Appetit

Food Management; Pharmacy Times

Source: College of Alameda Library and NCSU Library