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Psychology at Mat-Su College

A guide for MSC psychology courses.

What is a scholarly article?

Researchers, professors, and practicing psychology professionals write "scholarly articles" to share the results of studies and experiments. Scholarly articles are sometimes also called "peer-reviewed" articles or "journal articles."

Your papers should include scholarly articles for two reasons:

  1. Its author (or authors) are explaining thoughtful, careful research, not random observations or opinions.
  2. Scholarly articles go through peer-review before publication. Peer-review means the authors' peers -- other experts -- read the article. They decide if the article is good enough to publish. 

For more details on how to find scholarly articles, and how scholarly articles are different from magazine articles, read the rest of this page.

Where do I find scholarly articles?

Scholarly journals can cost hundreds of dollars per issue, so they don't just give their articles away.  When you find a scholarly article using a normal search engine like Google you might be asked to pay 30 or 40 dollars to read the article. Bad deal!

Instead, you should use the Mat-Su College Library website. We pay lots of money to subscribe to many databases -- that is, online collections of articles. 

There are several databases you might use when doing Psychology research. Here are a few:

Click on the name of a database to enter it. If necessary, login with your University of Alaska username and password.

Using Academic Search Premier to find articles

Using PsycINFO to find articles

Item not available online?

Sometimes you will click "Check Library for Full Text" and end up on a page that looks like this:

Screenshot showing "Item not available online" message.

Don't worry -- you can still get the article. You can request that we get it from another library that has access to it. This is a free service.

First, click the "Interlibrary Loan" link on the Mat-Su College webpage:

screenshot showing Interlibrary Loan link

Now enter the citation details into the "Interlibrary Loan Request Form-Magazine Journal" column:

screenshot of filled-out ILL form

After you click submit, you should receive an email or call in a few days telling you the article has arrived.

90 second video: how to tell if an article is scholarly

Still not sure if an article is scholarly?

There is another way to find out if an article is scholarly. We subscribe to a database called Ulrichsweb. It has information on periodicals such as journals and magazines. It will often say if a journal is scholarly.

Click here to enter Ulrichsweb.

Within Ulrichsweb, search the name of the journal you want to check. In the search results, look for a referee jersey icon next to the name of the journal you searched for. The referee jersey indicates that the journal is refereed (aka scholarly or peer-reviewed):

Screenshot of jersey icon mentioned in text above