Skip to Main Content
Skip to content

COMM 4183: Networking America: Differences in Scholarly and Non-Scholarly Resources

Joy Hayes

Differences Between Scholarly and Non-Scholarly Resources

Differences Between Non-Scholarly and Scholarly Resources

Non-Scholarly (Popular) Scholarly (Academic)
Author Journalist, layperson, or sometimes unknown Expert (scholar, professor, etc.) in field being discussed
Notes Few or no references/footnotes available Includes notes and/or bibliography
Style Written for the average reader Written for experts, uses subject-specific jargon, shows research
Editing Reviewed by people at the publisher Reviewed by editorial board of outside scholars (peer review)
Audience General public, people in stores/online Scholars and researchers in the field
Advertising Many ads, often in color Few or none; if there are any, they are for other scholarly materials
Look Eye-catching/interesting design, many pictures, color Plain, utilitarian, black and white, tables and charts
Contents Current events, general interest Specialized research topics only
Sample Titles The New Yorker, The Washington Post, National Geographic Harvard Educational Review, Journal of Environmental Law
Sample Article

"The Needless Complexity of Academic Writing" - The Atlantic, "Iowa City to launch a year of temporary sculpture installations" - The Daily Iowan

"Highly Efficient Reprogramming to Pluripotency and Directed Differentiation of Human Cells with Synthetic Modified mRNA" - Cell Stem Cell, "How Long is the Coast of Britain? Statistical Self-Similarity and Fractional Dimension" - Science

Activity - Choosing Between Scholarly and Non-Scholarly Sources

Activity - Choosing Between Non-Scholarly and Scholarly Articles