Douglas Library > Guides > How To Guides > Primary Sources > Primary Sources in the Sciences
Primary sources in the Sciences report original findings and ideas. Types of publications that report the results of original scientific research include:
Scientific primary research sources are most commonly accessed in scholarly journal research articles. it is important to note that not all articles written in peer reviewed scholarly journals are research articles. They also publish book review, news type articles and review articles.
Research articles are usually fairly easy to distinguish because they follow a standard format. To identify a research article, look for the following components or variations of them:
They usually present data in tables or graphs. Reading the article's abstract should also help you to determine whether the article is a research article.
When searching the periodical databases for research articles, your first step would be to limit your articles to peer reviewed or refereed journals. Doing this would eliminate any magazine or newspaper articles. When you find an article, read the abstract and look for the following words or variations of them: study, survey, measure, data, statistical, experiment, research.
Some databases allow you to limit your research specifically to research. For example, when refining a search in the CINAHL database, under Publication Type you can limit your results to Research.
Like primary sources in History, primary sources in the social sciences are works that were created or written during the time period which you are researching. Some examples of primary sources in the social sciences include:
You can not always determine if an item is a primary or secondary source just because of the source it is found in. The context is very important. A primary source is the first hand information and the secondary source writes about, discusses or interprets it.
Last Updated: 2017-08-28 2:43:36 PM