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How to...Find and Identify Peer Reviewed Journals: Making Sure: Is the Article Scholarly/Peer Reviewed?

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Making Sure: Is This a Scholarly Article? Is This Journal Peer Reviewed?

Some characteristics of scholarly articles - what to look for:

Authors: Peer reviewed journal articles are written by scholars in the field. They usually have a Ph.D. Look for author names, credentials (academic degrees) and university affiliation.

Vocabulary: Since peer reviewed journal articles are written by scholars, they typically use the vocabulary of that discipline, which can be very technical.

References: Peer reviewed journal articles often have a list of references (sources cited) either at the end of the article or in footnotes.

Publication Schedule:  Peer reviewed journals usually publish just 3 to 4 issues per year.


To check whether or not a journal is peer reviewed, use the Ulrichsweb Serials Directory, a library resource that you can access online with your myNOVA username and password.

  1. Enter the title of your journal (NOT the article title)

  2. Ulrichsweb refers to peer reviewed journals as refereed journals. If your journal is peer reviewed, you will see a little referee's jersey icon to the left that looks like this:

picture of Ulrichsweb referee shirt icon

Using Ulrichsweb to find out if a journal is peer reviewed