Skip to Main Content

Library Research: An Introduction

An introduction to the research process and the library's resources.

Introduction & Learning Objectives

The Triton College Library provides access to many databases that include newspaper, magazine, and journal articles, as well as background information, in a wide variety of subject areas. 

After reviewing the material in this section, students will be able to

  • Locate and access online resources using the library's databases

Google v. Library Databases

Source Types


Scholarly Journals

Popular Magazines

Audience/ Language

Articles in scholarly journals are written for professionals in a particular field. The language of the articles will often contain jargon related to that field.

Articles are written for a general audience, are free of technical jargon and easy to understand.


Authors are usually experts in a given field. The credentials and institutional affiliation of the authors are listed with each article.

Articles are written by professional journalists who may or may not have special knowledge of the topic. The author's name may not be listed.

Editorial Information

Edited by an editorial board consisting of experts in the field. The names, institutional affiliations and credentials of the editorial board are listed in the front of each issue.

Edited by journalists who may or may not have specialized knowledge of the topics of articles. Full editorial information is usually not provided, often just the name of the Editor in Chief or a few main editors.

Editorial Process

Articles are subjected to some form of peer review by outside experts in the topic covered by the article before being accepted for publication. Articles may be returned to the authors for revision before being accepted.

Articles are not reviewed by subject specialists.


Research articles, especially in science and health science journals, may contain the following sections: abstract, literature review, methodology, results and conclusion.

Articles do not have a specific format or structure.


Articles will contain a bibliography of works cited and/ or footnotes documenting the research.

Articles do not contain a bibliography or footnotes.


Journal of the American Medical Association, American Literature, Journal of Educational Research

Time, Sports Illustrated, Rolling Stone, Forbes

*This chart was created by Georgia State University, credit to owner. Original can be found here