In academic publishing, the goal of peer review is to assess the quality of articles submitted for publication in a scholarly journal. Before an article is deemed appropriate to be published in a peer-reviewed journal, it must undergo the following process:
Because a peer-reviewed journal will not publish articles that fail to meet the standards established for a given discipline, peer-reviewed articles that are accepted for publication exemplify the best research practices in a field.
Attribution: Much of the information in these boxes about the the peer-review process was used with permission from the awesome librarians at the Lloyd Sealy Library at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice.
When you are determining whether or not the article you found is a peer-reviewed article, you should consider the following.
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The easiest and fastest way to find peer-reviewed articles is to search the online library databases, many of which include peer-reviewed journals. To make sure your results come from peer-reviewed (also called "scholarly" or "academic") journals, do the following:
Read the database description to determine if it features peer-reviewed articles. All of the GRC databases have short descriptions about what kinds of topics they cover and why types of articles they house. Many, if not most, of the database house journal articles.
When you search for articles, choose the Advanced Search option. On the search screen, look for a check-box that allows you to limit your results to peer-reviewed only. Often, you can see the option to limit to peer-review as well as "full-text" in the advanced settings, or off to the left hand side of the database's results page.