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How To...Identify Scholarly Information

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The publisher can be:

Scholarly - a university, professional, or academic press; for example: Oxford University Press, American Psychological Association, Elsevier

Popular - reputable book publisher, magazine, or newspaper; blogs

Learn about publishers by visiting their websites and looking in the "About" section.  You can learn more about publishers by Googling them and seeing what other sites say about them.

Identify the Publisher: Books

To find out who the publisher is, look either on the page near the front of the book that gives the title, or look on the page that has the copyright information.

Image of a book's title page        Image of a book's copyright page

Identify the Publisher: Magazines, Journals and Newspapers

You can learn basic information about a magazine, journal or newspaper by visiting that periodical's website.  Look for an "About Us" section.

You can also learn more from Ulrich's Global Serials Directory (link is below). It usually provides a description, intended audience, and sometimes reviews.

Identify the Publisher: Websites

Look for:

  • The organization's background or credentials in the website's "About Us" section. 
  • News reports or other websites that report on or cite the organization.  Google them or check an article database such as Proquest.
  • The domain (e.g., .com, .edu, .org, .gov) can help identify the category the publisher falls into.