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Advanced Research: Article Evaluation

This guide is for MSJC students and advanced researchers and features topics such as strategic browsing, finding data and research tips to make your research process more efficient.

Evaluating an Article

Accuracy

  • Does the article cite references?
  • Is the work subject to peer review (scholarly journals) to determine the reliability of the content?

Bias

  • Does the article contain opinions or facts?
  • Does it reflect the goals of a political, religious, group or institution?

Authority

  • Is the author an expert or specialist in the field?
  • Does the article provide the author's credentials?
    •  Credentials: Credentials indicate the institution with which the author is associated and (occasionally) information about their education and past writings. In scholarly journals, the author’s credentials are always provided. You might need to look for credentials in various places, depending on the format of the journal. They may appear in a contributors’ list at the front or back of the issue, on the first page of the article, or at the end of an article

Currency

  • Is the information sufficiently up-to-date for the topic?
  • Are there currency limits required by your instructor?
  • You may need to consult multiple sources (journals or databases) to determine whether there have been recent substantial developments in the field.

Relevance

  • Does the information in the article answer your research question?
  • Is the information treated in-depth or just superficially?
  • Does it meet the requirements of the assignment?
  • Does it add something new to your knowledge of your topic?