Answered By: Research support team
Last Updated: Mar 18, 2022     Views: 79

Quick refresher: What is peer review?

Peer-reviewed articles are written by researchers and scholars. Authors submit their article to the journal where they hope to publish but before the article can be accepted for publication it must be evaluated by a committee of peer researchers and scholars with similar expertise. Peer reviewed publishing is a competitive process so a proportion of articles submitted will be rejected. Different journals have different acceptance rates.

For more information about what peer review means, please see this other FAQ.

Finding peer reviewed articles in RRU Library tools

Many of the library’s search tools have a ‘peer reviewed’ filter on the side of your search results, so you can narrow your results list to just the peer reviewed articles. For example, this is what that filter looks like in the left side of your Discovery search:

And this is what it looks like on the left side of a ProQuest database:

Some of the RRU Library’s tools, for example ScienceDirect or Emerald Journals, do not offer the ‘peer reviewed’ filter. Everything in these tools is academic in nature – no magazine or newspaper articles there – so what you need to do in these tools is just filter down to articles. As an example, this is what that will look like in ScienceDirect:

Finding peer reviewed articles in Google Scholar

There is no peer reviewed filter in Google Scholar, so you need to use your judgement when selecting material and you need to double check if you are unsure if something is peer reviewed.

Here are two citations found using the access to Google Scholar found on the RRU Library homepage:

The first one was published in a journal with a name starting with ‘American Review of’ and can it can be found in an RRU Library database. There is a good chance this is a peer reviewed article, but it may be a good idea to double check.

The second one was published in a research repository, not a journal, and it is not available in an RRU Library database. This may be peer reviewed, but you will need to examine it more closely than the first article to know.

Still wondering if a specific article was peer reviewed? Check the journal website.

To be sure if an article is peer reviewed, look for information about the peer-review process on the journal’s website. You can simply search the journal title (not the article title) in Google. The peer review process may be listed under "About this Journal" or in a section outlining submission guidelines for authors. It can take you a minute to find this.

For example, in the journal, ‘Culture and Organization’ you will find it under the ‘Instructions for authors’ section.

Still have questions? Ask us!

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