What's a journal?

A journal is a scholarly publication containing articles written by researchers, professors and other experts. Journals focus on a specific discipline or field of study. Unlike newspapers and magazines, journals are intended for an academic or technical audience, not general readers.

Journal examples:

Art Bulletin journal cover Canadian Public Policy journal cover Wilson Bulletin journal cover
PLOS logo First Monday online journal logo

Most journal articles...

  • Are peer reviewed
  • Have original research
  • Focus on current developments
  • Cite other works and have bibliographies
  • Can be in print, online or both

Journals are published on a regular basis (monthly, quarterly, etc.) and are sequentially numbered.

Each copy is an issue; a set of issues makes a volume (usually each year is a separate volume). Like newspapers and magazines, journals are also called periodicals or serials.

For more information contact:
Learning and Research