Articles are published several times a year in magazines or journals.
- Research articles are published in academic journals
- Articles in professional or trade publications as well as magazine articles are labeled as periodicals in the catalogue
Search for Articles
Use the MacEwan Library Search to search for articles by keyword (e.g., racism AND Alberta), or by title (e.g., “Large body size for metamorphic wood frogs in urban stormwater wetlands”).
When doing a keyword search, limit to “Peer Reviewed” or “Academic Journals” or "Magazines" using the options to the left of your search results, depending on what you are looking for.
To search for articles from a specific discipline (e.g., Sociology, Biology) try the following options:
- Visit the library’s Find a Database page
- Beside Find by Type, select “Articles”
- Beside Find by Subject, select a subject area
- Review descriptions for each database listed to ensure it meets your needs
- Explore the “Articles” page on library Subject Guides
The following technique, known as citation linking or chaining, can help with finding related works on a research topic by exploring which works have cited each other over time.
- Find older works: Once you have found an article on your topic, look through the articles it cites at the end in its reference list to find additional, related works
- Search for these articles by title using:
- Find more recent works: Search for an article by title in the following databases: If the article is available in any of the databases listed above, the search results will include a “Cited by” number for the article. Select this number to explore who has cited this work since it was published. Select the “Find It” option alongside these article results to locate copies of these more recent, related works.
Peer Reviewed Articles
The process whereby an academic journal article is read by subject experts who provide feedback before publication to ensure the information is accurate and contributes to the research in that area.
It is one way of ensuring quality control, it is important that this information can be relied upon if you are using it in an academic context and peer review helps eliminate errors, inaccuracies or unsupported information from articles. That is why some professors may ask you to use only peer reviewed articles in assignments.
Not all scholarly or academic journals are peer reviewed. You can see how to check if the article you have is peer reviewed in the how to confirm section.
How to Find Peer Reviewed Articles
If you know you need a peer reviewed article, it is easier to first limit your search to “Peer Reviewed” and “Academic Journals” using the options to the left of your search results so you are only picking from search results that are all peer reviewed articles.
- Put your keywords in the main search box at library.macewan.ca
- On the left menu of the results page apply the peer reviewed check box and academic journal source type
- Other library databases like CINAHL also have peer review check boxes
- Find a database relevant to your topic, by using the subject filter at https://library.macewan.ca/find-resources/find-database
- Put your keywords in the main search box on your database
- On the left menu, apply the peer reviewed (or scholarly) check box
Google Scholar is a search engine that provides access to articles published by academic journals as well as works posted to the web by scholarly societies, universities, conferences, and individual researchers. While Google Scholar can provide widespread results on a research topic, its search functionality is limited and the variety and quality of sources vary greatly.
Off-campus access: To access articles that MacEwan Library subscribes to off-campus using Google Scholar:
- Select Library Links from the Settings menu (top-left corner of webpage)
- Search for “MacEwan”
- Select and save the options presented
Search results the library subscribes to should now have a “Find it @ MacEwan” option beside them providing access to subscription content.
If you are searching Google Scholar - while those results will mostly be scholarly or academic journal articles, there are book chapters and other types of sources that end up in the search results sometimes. If you find something in Google or Google Scholar you can confirm if it is peer reviewed a few different ways…
How to Confirm an Article is Peer Reviewed
You can not tell if a journal article is peer reviewed by looking at the article itself. This is because the feedback is incorporated into the article such that you can not detect the changes that were made due to peer review. There is no trace of the peer review process in the finished article. Although there are no guarantees, knowing the article has undergone peer review is more of an assurance that the information in the article has been found to be credible and you can rely on its accuracy.
To check if your article is peer reviewed, you need to look for this information in other locations.
Places to check:
- Journal Home Page: You can check the home page of the journal your article is published in to see if the journal says they have a peer review process
- Ulrichsweb: You can look up the journal in Ulrichsweb to see if it is listed as peer reviewed
- Directory of Open Access Journals: You can look in the Directory of Open Access Journals to see if the information about the journal states they have a peer review process
1. Find the journal name: This is usually at the top of the online record or at the bottom of the article PDF - likewise it is usually at the top of a website or bottom.
2. Check the journal home page: Search the name of the journal to find its website, check the about page to see if the journal says they have a peer review process.
On Ulrichsweb, search the name of the journal and look for the peer reviewed symbol.
On DOAJ, search the name of the journal and look for information on peer review in the about section.