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Library Resources for the First Year Student: Journal Articles

Find Peer-Reviewed Articles

A peer-reviewed journal is a highly respected scholarly publication. Before an article is published in a peer-reviewed journal, it is sent by the editors of the journal to other scholars in the field ("peers") to get feedback on the quality of the scholarship. Reviewers comment on the quality of the research methods, as well as relevance or importance to the field. The article may be accepted, often with revisions suggested, or rejected for publication. Many researchers submit articles to peer-reviewed journals, and many of these journals have low acceptance rates. 

When searching for peer-reviewed articles, a good rule of thumb is to search in at least three different databases. Results, display, and search features differ from database to database so you may miss critical articles if you use just one.

Some great places to start your research are WPI Library Search and Google Scholar, which are interdisciplinary resources. For discipline-specific research, browse our Subject Guides to find databases and other online resources that relate to your topic. If you know the name of a database you wish to search, such as JSTOR or ScienceDirect, go to our A-Z List of Databases

To find peer reviewed articles in WPI Library Search, type your keywords into the Summon search box, and then choose the Peer-Reviewed Journals filter on the left.

Frequently Used Databases

You can also find peer-reviewed articles in our databases. Here are some databases to help you get started:

Only Finding a Citation? Get the Full Text

When searching in the library's databases, you may find an abstract for an article but not the full-text. When this happens, click on the FullTextFinder icon. 

The FullTextFinder will either redirect you to another database that has the full-text of the article or it will tell you that we don't have this article in our collections. If we don't have an article that you need, request the article via Interlibrary Loan. Interlibrary Loan (ILL) is a service that allows WPI students and faculty to request items from other libraries free of charge.