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Controversial Issues: Evaluating Articles

Writing an opinion or argumentative paper? Need to find quality sources on controversial topics? This is the guide for you!

TRADE Journals


  • print version ranges from plain to colorful
  • typically published weekly or monthly
  • contain ads related to the profession or trade
  • articles typically range from paragraph to 5 pages
  • current trends, issues, and news in the profession, 
  • articles typically written by a professional staff or guest writer, freelancer, or columnist; credentials and contact info sometimes provided
  • assumes reader's general knowledge of the profession/trade and its specific vocabulary
  • may include brief bibliographies or citations
    •  in an online database you may see this icon:




  • print version fairly plain
  • typically published no more than 4 times a year
  • may contain a few ads related to academia
  • articles are typically lengthy (15-20 pages)
  • an abstract (summary of the article) usually precedes the article
  • reports of original research, in-depth analysis of issues in the discipline, or in-depth book reviews
  • typically peer-reviewed (examined and approved by other experts in the field)
  • articles written by experts(typically, professors or researchers)
  • author's credentials (degree, title, affiliation) and contact information are typically provided
  • assumes reader's familiarity with the subject matter and knowledge of specific vocabulary
  • often includes tables, graphs and/or formulas
  • always includes footnotes/endnotes and a bibliography/references
  • in an online database you may see this icon:



  • print version typically colorful
  • typically published weekly, bi-weekly or monthly
  • contain ads for various products
  • articles typically range from paragraph to 5 pages
  • current events and news
  • articles typically written by journalists or freelance writers
  • may or may not include author's name or initials
  • language easy to understand for general readers
  • typically no citations/references
  • in an online database you may see these icons:

In an online database, you see this icon:          

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