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Quick Review: Types of Sources
In academic research, it's important to be able to distinguish between different types of sources. These differences often are contextual, meaning that a single source might fit in different categories depending on how you are using it and in what academic discipline you are writing.
Primary sources are the raw materials of scholarship.
Secondary sources report on or interpret primary sources.
Tertiary sources synthesize and present overviews of primary and secondary sources.
Scholarly sources present sophisticated, researched arguments using both primary and secondary sources and are written by experts.
Popular sources aim to inform or entertain and are intended for a general, non-specialized audience.
BEAM is an acronym intended to help you think about the various ways you might use sources when writing a researched argument. Joseph Bizup, an English professor at Boston University, outlined the framework in a 2008 article. The idea has since been refined and adapted by many others.
Associate Director for Public Services
Work with a Peer Research Advisor!
Kai and Maya are your Peer Research Advisors for 2021-22!
Peer research advising drop-in hours are in Library 146:
Sundays: 6:00pm to 9:00pm
Mondays: 6:00pm to 9:00pm
Tuesdays: 6:00pm to 9:00pm
Wednesdays: 6:00pm to 8:00pm
Research Marathon 1: November 18, 7-10pm, Library 146
Research Marathon 2: November 30, 7-10pm, Library 146