Skip to Main Content

Understanding Scholarly/Academic Research

Learn about research formats & methodology, credibility & relevance, peer-review & scholarly as well as impact metrics when choosing research content

What is peer-reviewed content?

  • articles that are peer-reviewed undergo a rigorous review process conducted by experts in the field of the article or journal topic
  • lengthy articles, presenting findings of a research study
  • the study contains references in the form of a literature review
  • not all articles in a peer-reviewed journal are peer-reviewed e.g. editorials, opinion pieces
  • an article or a journal can be peer-reviewed

What may not be peer-reviewed content?

  • links to content in Google or Google Scholar (or other online tools) websites, books (paper or electronic)

What is not peer-reviewed content?

  • Wikipedia entries (also not credible), editorials, newspaper articles, popular magazine articles, opinion pieces
  • article or journal titles with the word review in them (unless the journal record says peer-reviewed)
  • dissertations and theses are supervised by scholars, but are considered student works - always obtain permission from your instructor or chair to use student works in your own research. e.g. dissertation or literature review

Is This Article Relevant?

Ask yourself these questions to see if the content is relevant to your project

  • what is the thesis of the work? 
  • what is the central question of the work?
  • what is the research methodology and instrument for gathering data/evidence? eg. interviews, questionnaire? 
  • are the conclusions or results relevant?
  • can the data be used to make statements across populations (scholarly, academic research)?
  • are the results specific to a population (hospital study or limited by the institution and therefore credible but not scholarly)?
  • did the researchers involve their peers or did they publish without peer-review?
Program Resources
Research Aids
College Services

A-Z List of Databases

Business Plans & Case Studies

DNP Project Digital Repository

Encyclopedias & Dictionaries

Faculty Resources

How to Access Other Libraries

Library Homepage  


News & Current Events

Reference Service Policy


Video Tutorials

Black History & Culture

Clinical Practice Guidelines

DNP Research Support

Evidence Based Practice

History of Nursing 

Literature Reviews

MBA Healthcare

Nursing Classification

Nursing Programs

‚ÄčNursing Theory



APA Help

ChatGPT & OpenAI

Copyright & Fair Use

COVID-19 Resources

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Resources

ESL Resources

Evaluating Online Sources

Legal Resources for Healthcare

Maps and Data Sets 

Research Tips & Techniques

Research Tools & Instruments 

Statistics & Data Sets

Student Success in Online Learning

Understanding Scholarly Research


Code of Conduct

Financial Literacy


Post University Blog

Sentinel U Support

Student Center

Student Services

Writing Center