Link to Cal U home

POS301: Research Methods: POS301: Research Methods

In-Class Activity

Scholarly journal articles will be your primary sources of information for your upper level political science papers. It's important for you to have a good handle on how to identify a scholarly article when you see one.

This activity will help with that.

***Work with a partner on this***

Open the two articles (as PDF Full-text) linked below and compare/contrast them using the following criteria (you do not need to read the entire articles, just scan through them and skim a few sections):

  • Authors: who is the author and what are his/her credentials?
  • Content Level: Is it intended for scholars or general readers? Does it contain original research or is it more of a summary of the topic? Is that language/writing technical?
  • Layout, Organization, Overall "look": Is it divided into sections (methodology, abstract, conclusions)? What sorts of graphics are there?
  • Supporting Evidence: Is there any? How can you tell? What do I even mean by "supporting evidence"?


Article 1- Politics of Virtual Reality

Article 2- Community matters: How young adults use Facebook to evaluate political candidates

Are there any other criteria that could help you determine the "scholarliness" of the sources?

This site is maintained by Loring Prest, Library Webmaster and Carol Jones, Library Information Systems Administrator.
© California University of Pennsylvania, 250 University Ave, California, PA 15419, All Rights Reserved.