Learning Exercise

How to read a scholarly article

In this activity students learn how to read a scholarly article.


This infographic nicely summarizes an effective way to read a scholarly article. It is accompanied by a video, which is... see more


Scholarly articles comprise a significant source of information in academia, and undergird research. As with other kinds of reading, specific techniques are needed to optimize the experience and application of reading scholarly articles. You will gain those skills in this exercise.

1. Locate two scholarly articles (each should be from a different journal) on a designated research topic.

2. Using the video and infograph as your guide (http://guides.library.illinois.edu/c.php?g=348324&p=2351069), journal about your reading of the two scholarly articles.  Your journaling should be structured as as a 2-column table (article one in column 1, and article two in column 2). Then each row is a step (step 1: read the abstract, 2: read the conclusion, etc.). The column heading should be the article citation.

3. Compare the two articles, and summarize your experience.

Technical Notes

Internet connectivity


1. Selected two scholarly articles (from different journals) about the same research topic

2. Table of reading of the two scholarly articles

3. Written comparison of the two articles, and summation of experience


ICT literacy, information literacy, research skills,

Learning Objectives

1. Identify characteristics of a scholarly article

2. Locate scholarly articles

3. Competently read and analyze a scholarly article

4. Accurately compare two scholarly articles


Table criteria: follow directions, accurately read and articulately write about each scholarly article step by step

Comparison criteria: accurate, articulate and thorough comparison

Summation criteria: articulate, logical and insightful discussion about reading scholarly articles