Different fields of study might have different criteria for what is acceptable to use as a source. Not sure if your professor thinks a source will be valid? Ask them! Not sure how to evaluate a source? Ask us!
Professor Jeffrey Beall defines predatory journals:
"Predatory open-access publishers are those that unprofessionally exploit the gold open-access model for their own profit. That is to say, they operate as scholarly vanity presses and publish articles in exchange for the author fee. They are characterized by various levels of deception and lack of transparency in their operations." (Chronicle of Higher Education)
It is important to understand that some of these are included in databases, so vetting your sources and staying vigilant even in academic databases is important. You can look at a journal's information page to gather more information on their mission and background.
For more information on predatory journals see:
Icon: Money by Delwar Hossain from the Noun Project
Scholarly articles are usually structured with specific components such as a literature review, methods section, and references. To learn more and see examples of how this looks, click the link below.
Types of Articles
When researching, you will encounter many different types of articles. Here are a few examples to be aware of.
Peer Review is a process by which articles are reviewed by other scholars or experts in the field before being accepted for publication. Look out for "Peer Reviewed" filters in databases and the catalog to narrow your results to these types of articles.
Interested in learning more about this issue?
CHINESE CRUSH FOE IN CHIHKIANG ZONE. (1945, May 11). New York Times (1923-Current File) Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/107140388?accountid=13701
Can a Source be Primary and Secondary?
Simply put, yes. For example a documentary about World War II could be used as both a primary or secondary source. It could be used as a primary source if it has first-hand accounts or if you are studying the art of documentary. It could also be used as a secondary source because it uses primary source material to analyze an event.
Not sure if what you are looking at is primary or secondary?