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Writing 116 (Scheid): Original Research or Review?

Writing in the Natural Sciences

2 Types of Scholarly Articles

scholarly articles

Peer Review in 3 Minutes

North Carolina State University (NCSU) Libraries, 3:15

  1. What do peer reviewers do?  How are they similar to or different from editors?
  2. Who are the primary customers of scholarly journals?
  3. Do databases only include peer-reviewed articles?  How do you know?

Systematic Reviews

Systematic reviews are a type of literature review.  They summarize and analyze other studies such as clinical trials.  They are intended to be a completed summary of the literature in a specific area. 

Definition from Cochrane Consumer Network --  "What is a systematic review?"

Original Research Article Example

Original research articles are based on an experiment or study.  The authors will report the purpose of the study, the research methodology, and results. This is a familiar structure for original research articles > IMRAD: introduction, methods, results, and discussion.

Spatial structuring of soil microbial communities in commercial apple orchards (Deakin et. al)

Review Article Example

Review articles summarize or synthesize content from earlier published research and are useful for surveying the literature on a specific research area.  Review articles can lead you to original research articles.

NASA'S Robotic Lunar Lander Development Project (Cohen, Chavers, and Ballard)


Skim the information available for each article, or the article itself.  Determine if it is a review articles or an original research article.  Give a a minimum of two reasons for each decision.

Articles are linked in the box above.

Group A: Articles 1 & 3

Group B: Articles 2 & 4

Group C: Articles 3 & 6

Group D: Articles 4 & 5

Group E: Articles 1 & 5

 Group F: Articles 2 & 6