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What does Peer Review mean? The Difference Between Types of Publications

Need to find peer reviewed articles, but not sure what that means? Here are the differences between key publication types

Peer review means that a board of scholarly reviewers in the subject area of the journal review materials they publish for quality of research and adherence to editorial standards of the journal before articles are accepted for publication. If you use materials from peer-reviewed publications they have been vetted by scholars in your field for quality and importance.   

The kinds of articles students encounter most are scholarly journal articles, popular magazine and newspaper articles, and trade publication articles. This chart explains the major distinctions between these types of publications that publish articles. 



AUTHOR Expert (scholar, professor, researcher, etc.) in field covered. Author is always named. Journalist; nonprofessional or layperson. Sometimes author is not named. Business or industry representative. Sometimes author is not named.
NOTES Usually includes notes and/or bibliographic references. Few or no notes or bibliographic references. Few or no notes or bibliographic references.
CONTENT News and research (methodology, theory) from the field. Current events; general interest. Business or industry information (trends, products, techniques).
STYLE Written for experts using technical language. Journalistic; written for nonprofessional or layperson. Written for people in the business or industry using technical language.
AUDIENCE Scholars or researchers in the field. General public. People in the business or industry.
REVIEW Usually reviewed by peer scholars (referees) not employed by the journal. Reviewed by one or more editors employed by the magazine or newspaper. Reviewed by one or more editors employed by the magazine.
APPEARANCE Plain; mostly print, sometimes with black and white figures, tables, graphs and/or charts. The magazines are usually glossy, with many pictures in color, and the papers also generally have pictures for major stories. Glossy, with many pictures in color.
ADS Few or none; if any, usually for books or other professional materials. In magazines, there are many, often in color. Newspapers generally have a few in print and more online. Some, often in color.
FREQUENCY Usually monthly or quarterly. Magazines are usually weekly or monthly, and newspapers are usually daily. Usually weekly or monthly.
EXAMPLES Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management: An International Journal (published by Emerald Publishing Limited).

The Atlantic (commercially published).

The New York Times (commercially published).

American Coin-Op (published by American Trade Magazines LLC)

Written by: Brittany Geissinger and Linda Salem

Wait, there's more! Local Newspapers and Business Publications are also useful:

When your business research is focused on the performance of an industry in a particular region, the overall economy of a particular region, or a company that is headquartered in a particular place, local newspapers and regional business publications are an excellent source. These publications are also useful for overall industry research if the industry is predominantly located in a particular place. For example, San Francisco and Bay Area publications will give insight into the overall tech industry, and New York or L.A. publications will give insight into the overall film industry.

Example San Diego Publications:

The San Diego Union-Tribune's Business Section (Local Newspaper)

Crain's San Diego (Local Business News)