According to the APA Dictionary of Psychology to be 'empirical' research is "1. derived from or denoting experimentation or systematic observations as the basis for conclusion or determination, as opposed to speculative, theoretical, or exclusively reason-based approaches. 2. based on experience."
Refers to the process that a scholarly book or journal article goes through when an authors research and writing is evaluated by experts in their discipline or field. In the case of a journal article, peers review articles to determine if they'll be accepted and published in a specific journal. In the case of counseling journals expert peers are evaluating and checking the accuracy and originality of the research being reported on.
Spring 2020 update:
The Archives & Special Collections is currently unable to host in-person researchers. If you need assistance or would like to set up a virtual appointment, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A small selection of digitized material from the Archives & Special Collections is available online 24/7.
Are original materials based on first-hand accounts of research conducted by the author(s). They are usually written at the time the research is occurring or shortly after the research is complete, and they present new information or discoveries.
Primary sources in counseling:
When looking at a record in PsycINFO to try to determine if the resource you're looking at is a primary source, it's important to check to see if the article is an empirical study. Look for the "methodology" field of the record.
If there is an indication that the resource you're looking at is an Empirical Study then you know that it's research-based, and is a primary source.
Primary sources are original, uninterpreted information. Scholars analyze primary sources in order to answer research questions. Examples of primary sources vary by discipline.
Examples in the humanities:
Examples in the social sciences:
Example in the sciences:
This guide highlights only a small portion of the many resources available to you. If you're not finding what you need, don't hesitate to contact Andrea!
Social Sciences Liaison Librarian
tel: (253) 879-2875
office: Collins Library 141
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