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Graduate Students' Guide to the Library: Journal Articles

Graduate students have specialized research needs. This guide provides tips and tricks for getting started, but we also recommend that you get to know your subject librarian for in-depth questions and support.

Database Searching

Database searching is key to the research process. The University of Wyoming subscribes to a number of different databases in a variety of fields. Click the databases A to Z to check out all of the databases available to you. 

Citation Chaining

Citation chaining is the process of locating related works both forward and backward in time. Links to references cited in an original work take you backward in time. Links to "cited by" works take you forward in time from an original article to works that cite the original work. Citation chaining establishes an historical perspective or the progression of a topic or line of inquiry. Citation databases facilitate the process by providing linkages between academic articles.  

Getting Full Text

When you search any of the library's databases or use the QuickSearch box you may have to go through a few steps to find the full-text of the articles you need. If you don't see a direct link to the full text of the article, go through the following steps:

 

  • Click the "Find It@UW" button .  If a full-text copy is available, a link to the article will appear.
  • If no online copy is available, you may order the article by clicking the Interlibrary Loan button 

Search QuickSearch Scopes

UW Libraries QuickSearch: includes the collections of the University Libraries, UW Law Library, and the American Heritage Center. Searches almost everything.

Use this QuickSearch link to search Books, E-Books & Media.

Lastly, use this QuickSearch link to search Course Reserves.

Interlibrary Loan: UW students, faculty and staff can request books, journal volumes, journal articles and other materials, regardless of whether it is available in the UW Libraries, online or in libraries around the world. A free service! Interlibrary Loan link.

Library Search/Retrieval Options

 

UW Libraries QuickSearch: includes the collections of the University Libraries, UW Law Library, and the American Heritage Center.

 


Prospector: a unified catalog of twenty-three academic, public and special libraries in Colorado and Wyoming. UW students, faculty and staff can borrow materials from Prospector.

 

 

yellow arrow on a sky blue boxInterlibrary Loan: UW students, faculty and staff can request books, journal volumes, journal articles and other materials, regardless of whether it is available in the UW Libraries, online or in libraries around the world. A free service!

 

Popular vs. Scholarly Articles - What's the difference?

There are three distinct types of articles: scholarly, popular, and trade.

 

Cover of the Journal of the American AssociationScholarly articles are usually lengthy and written in scholarly language by scholars and researchers.  These articles are often peer-reviewed, which means that the information in the article was checked for accuracy and importance by a team of experts in the field before publication.

Scholarly articles often report on research.  Research articles can be identified by their standard format, containing sections titled Abstract, Methods, Results, Conclusions, and Bibliography. 

Be aware that scholarly journals sometimes contain non-scholarly content, such as book reviews or editorial opinions. While these articles can be useful they do not qualify as "scholarly" or "peer-reviewed".

If you are not sure whether an article is peer-reviewed, you can look up the journal in the Ulrich's Periodicals Directory to find out, or check the author guidelines on the journal's web site.

Cover of Time magazine Popular articles are the articles in magazines that you encounter in the grocery store or the dentist's office. The articles are written by journalists to inform and entertain, and frequently give short, easy-to-read overviews of the research articles published in scholarly journals.

Cover of Pharmacy TimesTrade journal articles are a third type of journal article you might encounter. These articles contain practical advice and information for workers within a specific occupation. For example, a professional pharmacist might read the trade journal Pharmacy Times to find out about new advances in child-proof lids, but she will turn to scholarly research articles to learn how a new drug performed in clinical trials.

Anatomy of a Scholarly Article

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