Primary Literature in the Sciences


Primary literature in the sciences Lemieux Library and McGoldrick Learning Commons Seattle University Primary literature reports original research studies and experiments conducted by the authors Primary literature can include: scholarly journal articles conference papers, theses and dissertations, and field notes. It’s “primary” because it’s where the results of original research are published first. Secondary literature summarizes primary literature sometimes for a wider audience. Secondary literature can include: textbooks, encyclopedias, newspaper and magazine articles, blogs and websites, and review articles. Review articles look similar to primary research articles. For example: They’re usually published in peer reviewed (scholarly) journals, they have abstracts, citations and a works cited or references section. However, review articles do not report original research findings. Instead, they analyze research studies. previously published. by others. Primary or secondary? How can I tell the difference? Primary literature: describes original research findings Also, scientific papers follow a set format. This includes: title, abstract, introduction, methods, results, discussion, acknowledgements, and references. There are three main sections in a scientific paper where the research itself is described: methods, results, and discussion. Questions? Ask a librarian. http://www.seattleu.edu/library/services/research/

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