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Argument and research: Articles

A guide for researching argument writing and speech assignments

Why use different types of articles?

Tick icons created by Kiranshastry - FlaticonDifferent types of articles give you different perspectives on your issue:

  • Scholarly or Peer-Reviewed or Academic Journal articles
    • Good to find results of scientific or academic research. 
    • They are written for scholars and provide in-depth analysis of a very specific area of your topic.
  • Trade Journal articles
    • Good for finding articles written for specific professions (police officer, veterinarian...etc.) 
    • They may offer analysis of how an issue affects the profession.
  • Popular Magazine articles
    • Good for summarizing information on a topic for the general public. 
    • They often provide some background, summarize research findings, and may provide some analysis of a topic.
    • In addition they sometimes provide the "human side" of an issue by featuring the story of a person or people affected by that issue.
  • Newspaper articles
    • Good for facts and up-to-date information. 
    • They often provide little analysis of a topic, and may not provide much background especially if it is an ongoing issue. 
    • Some newspaper articles can share similarities with popular magazine articles.

Starting points for finding articles for most subjects

Why use articles from library databases in your research?

  • Journal articles are often more specific and current than books
  • Sometimes journal articles will be the ONLY place to find information on a current artist or on a specific work.
  • The Library’s databases contain thousands of articles from newspapers, magazines, trade journals, and scholarly journals. That means you can NARROW DOWN your search to academic sources, like scholarly journals. 
  • You cannot find and access the full text of most of these journal articles through Google

Searching in Academic Search Complete

Search tips

The image below shows an advanced search where, In each search field, keywords were added. The use of the boolean OR was added, and quotation marks were used to limit the results to only those that contain those exact phrases. 

(click on image to enlarge)

screenshot of Academic Search Premier

Searching ProQuest

Search tips:

As shown in the image below, you can search by combining keywords. The Advanced Search setting will give you the search fields where you can add terms, as well as additional filters to narrow your results. 

(Click on image to enlarge)

ProQuest screenshot

Searching JSTOR

Search tips

The image below shows the following search string: ("music education" OR "music instruction" ) AND (problems OR controversies) 

The built in AND is a boolean tool used to combine the keywords entered in each box. That AND drop down field can be changed to NOT or OR as well. Instead of adding additional search boxes to accomodate all the terms, the boolean OR was just added to the search field. 

Sample search in JSTOR library database

What are databases and why do you need them?

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