Periodicals: Magazines, Journals & Newspapers
Periodicals are good sources for current information on many topics. Periodicals are materials that are published at regular intervals, such as magazines, journals, and newspapers. In libraries, periodicals are sometimes referred to as serials.
The LSSC libraries offer a wide array of online databases which efficiently locate periodical articles, sometimes providing the full text of the article online, sometimes providing only a citation or an abstract. These electronic indexes are searchable by author, subject and/or keyword as well as by other searchable features, such as ISSN or publisher.
Some databases provide only an index of citations and you have to locate the article in another database or in its print format. A complete citation for an article includes the title of the article, author or authors (if listed), the name of the journal, the volume number, the pages and date of the magazine or journal issue.
Many of the online periodical indexes also contain abstracts or summaries of the content of the article. Databases such as Academic Search Complete, NewsBank, SIRS Researcher, OmniFile Full Text, and General OneFile additionally offer full-text articles online. If the entire article is not available in full text, print out or write down the entire citation so you will be able to locate the journal article elsewhere. An article may be available in the library in paper copy, on microfilm, or in another full-text database. Articles may also be obtained from other libraries via interlibrary loan.
Periodical publications have varying purposes and are often intended for specific audiences. The following is a general guide to help determine the different types of periodicals you will find.
|Intended for students, scholars, professors, researchers
||Intended for people in the industry or profession and prospective employees
||Intended for general readership
||Intended for general readership|
|Available mainly in libraries
||Available on subscription basis to individuals and libraries
||Widely available at newsstands, grocery or retail stores, etc.
||Available by subscription and at newsstands|
|Few illustrations, graphics used are informational--charts, graph, tables
||Some photos, graphics--charts, tables
||Many dramatic photos, graphics and colorful illustrations
||Photos, some graphics|
|Minimal advertising; ads generally promote materials relevant to the field
||Ads generally promote materials relevant to the profession or industry
||Loaded with all kinds of advertising
|Authors are authorities, experts credentialed in the field
||Authors are experienced specialists in the field or industry
||Journalists, staff writers or free-lance writers
||Local staff, newswire services, and syndicated columnists|
|Articles undergo peer review; critiqued by other experts prior to publication
||No peer review process
||No peer review process
||Editorial review, but no peer review process|
|Articles document research or report on scholarly studies
||Articles present practical information related to the industry, profession or trade
||Articles report news, information, may entertain
||Articles report news, current events|
|Articles are signed; sources are cited in footnotes, endnotes or bibliographies
||Articles are signed; sources mentioned, but not often formally cited in endnotes or bibliographies
||Articles frequently unsigned; sources, when given, are not cited formally in footnotes or endnotes
||Articles sometimes signed but sources not formally cited|
|Articles contain formal jargon
||Articles contain jargon used in the trade or profession
||No specialized vocabulary used
||Articles written with common words and simple sentence structure|