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Embedded Libguides: SEE3008 (COE)

SEE3008 Library Resources

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What is a Trade Magazine?

Also known as industry magazines.

Appearance: Generally attractive and are often illustrated with color photographs.

Audience: Written for industry professionals.

Author/Authority: Articles written by staff writers, though the magazine may sometimes accept articles from industry professionals.

Citations: Occasionally list references at the end of the article or provide footnotes within the text.

Content: Includes current events and special features within a particular profession or industry.

Frequency: Usually published biweekly or monthly.



Find trade magazines in these databases:

What is an Academic Journal?

Also known as scholarly, refereed, or peer-reviewed journals.

Appearance: Generally have a sober, serious look. May contain graphs and charts, but few glossy photographs. Scholarly language with vocabulary specific to their profession or field.

Audience: Written for academics and professionals.

Author/Authority: Articles written by researchers or scholars in the field who report the results of original research.

Citations: Articles include footnotes and a list of citations at the end of the article.

Content: New research in the field. Articles contain an abstract, methodology, discussion, charts or tables, results, conclusions, and references.

Frequency: Usually published bimonthly or quarterly.



Find scholarly journals in these databases:


Wikipedia is a non-profit encyclopedia, produced by volunteer editors. Anyone can join, write, and edit Wikipedia meaning that not all articles have the same quality.

Articles are not reviewed by an editorial body. Instead, they are peer-reviewed by other editors in accordance to whether they meet certain standards that the Wikipedia community has developed over the years, including whether they are neutral, factual and verifiable.

Millions of people use Wikipedia, but are Wikipedia articles suitable for academic work?

It depends. Check with your professor to see if citing Wikipedia is allowed. Generally, when you are writing an academic research paper, you should be working with peer-reviewed, scholarly and technical sources -- not general encyclopedia articles, such as Wikipedia. If you need a quick overview about a topic, Wikipedia is a great source!

Yes, you can create a Wikipedia article or edit an existing entry.

Find more information at the Wikipedia Community Portal or watch the videos below.


Websites v. Library Databases 

  Websites (Wikipedia,, etc) Library Databases

An author of a website is often difficult to verify. Cannot limit to professional, scholarly literature. Information on the Web is seldom regulated, which means authority is often in doubt.

Authority is easier to identify in databases. Most databases include detailed information about articles including author and original publication.  The more you know about a source, the easier it is to verify accuracy.

Number of Hits Millions of hits, much of the same information repackaged. Duplicates are not filtered out. Hundreds of hits - a more manageable number, duplicates can be filtered out, and ability to restrict to date range.
Cost Many websites, like Wikipedia, are free. But often, you'll run into paywalls where access is restricted to only subscribers. The library databases are available to the entire JWU community. High-quality, accurate, information is guaranteed through the library's homepage. Subscriptions cost over 5k and provide a wide variety of Ebooks, articles, and video to JWU.
Searching Hard to limit searches. Cannot restrict to only current publications or peer reviewed sources. Advanced search features include limiting by publication type, date, language, document format, scholarly/peer-reviewed status.
Access to Published Information Web information is created by anyone with Internet access. Seldom is the information coming from legitimate published sources: magazines, academic journals, books, - without a fee. Databases index only published information, Information that originally appeared in print: magazine and journal articles, books, etc. Through the library’s homepage, all of the content in the databases is available to JWU for free.