Your instructor is asking you to use scholarly sources for your research. Scholarly information is based on in-depth research and is considered to be higher quality and more reliable information for your paper. Scholarly journal articles are normally either peer reviewed or invited by the editor of the journal. Books, book chapters, and conference proceedings can also be sources of scholarly information.
Some of the common characteristics that can help you recognize different types of information sources are listed below.
General Audience (Popular)
Trade / Professional Publications
How can you tell whether a journal is peer reviewed?
Check the introductory and descriptive material in the journal:
Look up the journal in the Ulrichsweb database:
Limit your search results to peer reviewed sources, if the database includes that feature.
Remember: not all articles in a peer reviewed journal are actually peer reviewed. Editorials, letters to the editor, news, and opinion pieces, for example, are not peer reviewed.