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Reading Academic Articles

Here are some basic tips for reading (and understanding!) an academic article

  • Look at the structure of the article. Most academic articles, particularly those reporting study data and findings, are structured in a similar way:

Abstract (summary of the whole article)
Introduction (why they did the research)
Methodology (how they did the research)
Results (what happened)
Discussion (what the results mean)
Conclusion (what they learned)
References (whose research they read)

  • Read the abstract and conclusion first, as these have the main points.
  • Read the discussion next. This will give you a longer report on the findings and their implications.
  • At this point, if you're sure the article has what you need, start at the beginning and read the whole thing through, taking notes as you go.

Interlibrary Loan

When you find an article listed in a research database, and the article is not immediately available to read, use the Search for Item button to search Pace's periodical holdings. If you get a message that directs you to use the ILLiad Interlibrary Loan service to request a copy of the article, follow the appropriate link.

  • First time user? You must create an ILLiad account using your Pace credentials. Otherwise, just log in.
  • Articles and other e-resources can take anywhere from 24 hours to a few days to obtain.
  • Books will take longer to obtain: you will receive an email notification. Then visit the Circulation Desk to claim the book.
  • NOTE: you must log in to ILLiad in order to get PDF articles and other e-documents that you requested. On the left side of page, you must click VIEW > Electronically Received Articles. Be sure to download and save the articles.

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Susan Thomas
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