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Types of Sources: Magazines

So many choices! Use this guide to determine when to use a book, journal, video, encyclopedia or other sources.

About Magazines

Magazines publish articles on topics of popular interest and current events. The articles are written by journalists and are for the general public.

Use a magazine:

  • to find information or opinions about popular culture
  • to find up-to-date information about current events
  • to find general articles written for people who are not necessarily specialists in the topic area
  • to find commentaries, expert or popular opinions

Characteristics of Magazines

Authors are:

usually staff writers or journalists, often a generalist.

Sources are:

rarely cited, original sources may be obscure.

Articles are:

brief, unless a feature.

Find Magazines

Use the Journals search to find magazines, such as National Geographic, by title. 

Many magazines have their own websites sites and sometimes they provide earlier, popular articles free. If they charge for articles, check the WPI Journal search to see if WPI subscribes or has access within a database.

Try the following databases to find magazine articles.

Examples of Magazines

How to Cite

Example print magazines reference citation in American Psychological Association (APA) style:

Farooha, R. (2011, December 5). Why China and corporations are alike. Time, 178(22), 22.

Example online magazines reference citation in American Psychological Association (APA) style:

Cavanaugh, R. (2016, October 31). The witch trials that America forgot. Time.

For information on additional citation styles, please see the Citing Sources guide.