Skip to main content
Link to Libraries homepage
Link to Libraries homepage
Rutgers University Libraries

Students in Transition Seminar Introduction to the Rutgers University Libraries: Finding Scholarly Articles by RU Professors

Library guide for students enrolled in the Students in Transition Seminars.


As a research institution, our professors are involved in active and ongoing research. A list of some of our prominent professors and their areas of interest is attached below.

For this assignment, you will find publications written by one of our Rutgers professors. You may use a professor from our list or you may use one of your own professors. Once you have selected a professor, follow the steps in the attached assignment:

How to tell if an article is scholarly?

How can I tell if an article is scholarly?

Typical features of a scholarly article:

  • Length: scholarly articles are longer, usually at least 8 pages, but there is no set rule, and they usually include diagrams, charts, or graphs

  • Bibliography: scholarly articles always have a list of cited works

  • Language: scholarly articles are written for scholars and not the general public, so the language is specialized and technical

  • Authors: scholarly articles are written by experts who usually have PhDs and academic affiliations

Scholarly articles are published in  scholarly journals:

  • Some databases will allow you to limit your search to scholarly journals, other databases may provide further details about journals such as whether they are scholarly.
  • Publisher databases will include information about a peer review process if the journal is scholarly

Just because your article is published in a scholarly journal doesn't mean your article is scholarly because scholarly journals contain the following items which are NOT scholarly:

  • Book reviews
  • Editorials
  • Letters to the editor
  • Short news items

If you are unsure about using the information you've found, be sure to check with a librarian or your professor.

Assignment hints

Question 1

It is HIGHLY recommended you use the list provided by the Libraries in the assignment box. Only use one of your own professors if the University directory lists their title as professor. If their title is part-time lecturer, adjunct or teaching assistant, you will NOT be able to use them.

Question 2

Make sure you choose a professor (from the Libraries list) from your field of study.

Queston 3

If you are using the list from the Libraries, a database title is provided for you. If you are using the articles tab on the Library website, it is called Articles+. Otherwise, choose a database from the subject listing.

HINT: when searching for articles written by someone, sometimes you will need to put the last name first and sometimes you will need to specify in the database that you are performing an author search.

Question 4

a-d: yes or no

e. Acceptable answers:

  • limited results to peer reviewed journals or academic journals,
  • used a database that only includes scholarly journals
  • article record in database states it is scholarly
  • checked publisher website,

Make sure you didn't select a book review or opinion piece since these items are found in scholarly journals, but they are not scholarly.

Question 5

If full text is not available in the database, try clicking on Get it @ R to see if we have it in the libraries. If it is not available electronically, you can request a copy through the Article Delivery Service.

Need help?

Do you need additional help with this assignment?

Contact us at

For questions about the Libraries, unrelated to this assignment, please feel free to use any of our Ask a Librarian services.

Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, an equal access/equal opportunity institution. Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to direct suggestions, comments, or complaints concerning any accessibility issues with Rutgers web sites to: or complete the Report Accessibility Barrier / Provide Feedback Form.