BIO150Y Optimal Information Foraging  

Evaluating Journal Articles

Evaluate your results!

Evaluating information

A journal article is usually easier to evaluate than Web sites since articles have already been edited or peer reviewed. But, not all the articles you find will be relevant for your topic.

Still, use your judgement to determine if the author's conclusions are sound and based on the data presented. You may want to review How to read a scientific article.


  • Is the article an opinion piece? Original research? Review article? Review different article types.

  • Can you use the cited references in the article to find more articles or information?

  • Does the library have this journal (print or electronic)?

  • Is the article in English (or another language you can understand)?

  • How recent is the article?

Are all full text articles found in a database suitable for your research?

Some Additional Resources

  • Citing Journals: How and why to cite journal articles.

  • Games: Test your information foraging skills with two games.

  • Review : Site guide to Optimal Information Foraging Exercise.

  • Additional Help : Services and people to help with writing and research skills.

Let's look at books... Next

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