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Bus100: Introduction to Business 2020: Scholarly Journals & Trade Pubs

Scholarly or Popular?

There are many different types of publications, ranging from scholarly journals to trade publications to general magazines and newspapers. How can you tell the difference?



Scholarly journal

Trade/professional pub

Popular magazine


Plain cover/plain paper; black/white graphics and illustrations

Cover may depict industry setting; glossy; color

Eye-catching cover; glossy; pics and illustrations in color


Research projects, methodology, and theory

Industry trends, products or techniques, organizational news

Personalities, news, opinions, general interest


Academic or professional; professors, researchers, students

Members of specific business, industry, or organization

General public

Peer reviewed?*






Maybe – sometimes have short bibliographies



Few or none

Moderate – most will be trade-related






Writing style

Specialized vocabulary or jargon; may require training or subject expertise to understand

Specialized vocabulary or jargon; may require training or subject expertise to understand

Vocabulary that can be understood by general public


Communication Research

Journal of Communication

Journalism History

Advertising Age

Columbia Journalism Review

Editor & Publisher


Sports Illustrated

Vanity Fair



*On Peer Review: Peer reviewed articles (also sometimes called refereed articles or scholarly articles) require that experts in the field must first examine the article before it is accepted for publication. This ensures that the research is sound and of high quality.

Finding Trade Publications

Trade publications are a specific kind of publication — usually a magazine, journal or newspaper — that aregeared to people who work in a specific business or industry. To find these publications, try searching Google for [your industry] + "trade journal" or "magazine". Sometimes you may have to think creatively about what industry is most closely connected to your business idea. 

You will also see articles from trade publications appearing in your search results in Business Source Complete and OneSearch. They will often have names like: "Retail Merchandiser" or "Design Week" or "American Libraries." 

For scholarly pubs and trade journals

What you can do in the database:

  • Add articles to a folder, to send to yourself all at once (But don't leave the database before sending! they won't save).
  • E-mail PDFs of articles to yourself
  • Generate citations to the articles (Use the Cite button on right when viewing article): BUT ALWAYS DOUBLE-CHECK CITATION