Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Research and Learning skills: Information types

Types of sources

Finding resources for your assignments can be a daunting task where you have to determine how authoritative a source is. There are two basic types of sources based on level of authority: scholarly and non-scholarly.

To help students to identity the sources better, here are some basic explanations:

Scholarly sources (also referred to as academic, peer-reviewed, or refereed sources) - are written by academics or researchers who are experts in their fields for other academics to read.

The most common scholarly source is a journal article. A journal is like a scholarly magazine. Its writing and focus is for a specific audience. Most electronic databases,such as WAI LRC subscribed databases, allow you to limit your search to peer-reviewed or scholarly journals.

Some books can also be considered a scholarly resource. Books which are written by academic experts for an academic audience are likely to be scholarly sources.

Non-scholarly sources

For Higher Education assignments, scholarly and/or peer-reviewed sources are often the requirement. However, you still may need to use information from a non-academic author.

Non-scholarly sources are not written by experts or for an academic audience, and often do not include any references, or only a few references in a informal style.

Non-scholarly sources can be newspaper articles, magazines,  government reports and most web sites - including Wikipedia, Google, Yahoo...etc.

These sources can be a great place to find background information about a topic, however, it is important to evaluate your sources so that you are using reliable and accurate information.

What's a Library Database?

In the Library, we have...

Contact Us

William Angliss Institute Library (LRC), Building C | Ground Floor T | 9606 2237 | E | lrc@angliss.edu.au