Skip to Main Content


Finding Articles in the Library & on the Web

What are they?

  • Trade journals, magazines, and newspapers are excellent sources for the latest business news and trends.
  • Trade journals focus on one industry and provide in-depth information on trends, new products and other topics of interest to people working in that industry.
  • Articles, particularly in online publications, are often reprints of articles from other sources. They usually say so and if that is the case, find the original source and use that instead. (This is a common practice in GCaptain for example.)
  • They are full of advertisements, which in and of itself is fine, but beware of advertisements that are disguised as articles! This is common and you need to pay attention. Do NOT use information from these ads unless you are including the information in a product review of your own. 
  • An EXCELLENT resource when job hunting!

What they're not:

  • Trade journals are not peer-reviewed, and therefore do not publish scholarly articles. If this is an assignment requirement, don't use them.
  • They are not written by professional journalists or academics, so articles may be more casual, sometimes shorter and in need of fact-checking.
  • They are not free of bias. Industry partners contribute money to the publication of these journals through advertisements and direct sponsorship. Be savvy when considering how they may also influence the perspectives published in the journal. 

Evaluating online sources with the Four Moves

We recommend that you use these four moves to help you uncover the truth of a claim. We will cover them in class, but if you miss it or need a refresher, you will see a summary below, or better yet, you can follow the link provided to explore each move more carefully. As you read and research, you will want to stop, investigate the source, find better coverage, and trace back to the original context. This isn't meant to be time-consuming. It IS meant to be thorough!

  • STOP. Think critically. Avoid being too emotionally charged or looking for information that confirms your own biases. Have an open mind to consider new or controversial topics, and seek to understand. Also, just spend a minute on the site. Can you easily see who publishes the site and do you know anything about them? What words or pictures do you notice? Any red flags? No? Move on!

  • INVESTIGATE. When you spend a little time on the page, can you find out who wrote the article? Is there a tone or bias to be aware of? Do a quick search to find out more about the publisher or sponsor of the page. 

  • FIND BETTER COVERAGE. Find the main point of the article and quickly Google it. Can you find a better article on the same topic? Better could mean longer, less biased, more sources cited, pictures and diagrams included or easier to understand. 

  • TRACE CLAIMS. Trace claims, quotes, and media to the original source.