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Information Literacy Tutorial: 2b) Popular Sources

How do I know if a source is popular?

Articles published in magazines and newspapers are written for a general audience. Sometimes library databases will include articles from both scholarly sources( e.g. scholarly journal articles) and popular sources (e.g. magazine and newspaper articles), so you need to be able to differentiate between the two.

General characteristics of popular sources include:

When/Why do I use a popular source?

Test: Popular

Explore the image below -- mouseover the targets to learn more about the anatomy of a popular article. This example uses a magazine article, but the elements discussed also apply to websites, newspapers, and some books.


Mower, Sarah. "View: Sustainable Style—Shopping Consciously: Attention, Shoppers." Vogue. May 01 2007: 121,121, 122, 124. The Vogue Archive. 30 Jan. 2013 .

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