What is a  Peer Reviewed Journal?

What is a Peer Reviewed Journal?

A peer reviewed journal may also be called a refereed journal. A peer reviewed journal requires that, prior to publication, submitted articles be approved by a board of reviewers and/or peers in the subject area in order to evaluate the quality, validity and reliability of the article. This review process is done ‘blindly’, meaning the reviewers do not know the names or academic affiliations of the authors and the authors do not know who is reviewing their work.

How to recognize peer-reviewed (refereed) journals

In many cases professors will require that students utilize articles from “peer-reviewed” journals. Sometimes the phrases “refereed journals” or “scholarly journals” are used to describe the same type of journals. But what are peer-reviewed (or refereed or scholarly) journal articles, and why do faculty require their use?

Not all information in a peer-reviewed journal is actually refereed, or reviewed. For example, editorials, letters to the editor, book reviews, and other types of information don’t count as articles, and may not be accepted by your professor.

You need to be able to identify which journals are peer-reviewed by limiting a database search to peer-reviewed journals only.

Some databases allow you to limit searches for articles to peer reviewed journals only. For example, Academic Search Complete has this feature on the initial search screen. In some databases you may have to go to an “advanced” or “expert” search screen to do this. Remember, many databases do not allow you to limit your search in this way.