Reading research papers is not like reading novels. Nor is it like reading text books. Research papers are introducing new information or new ideas into the scholarly literature.
Research articles follow the conventions of their discipline for structure and purpose. Once you know these conventions, you can strategically approach how you read research.
In order to become strategic, you first have to know what information you are looking for. Then you have to know where that information is likely to be located in the article.
In this lesson you will learn:
- the standard structure for scientific primary research articles;
- a strategy for quickly locating key information in any scientific research article;
- how to search databases using what you learned from previous research.
To begin, download this worksheet in Microsoft Word and answer the questions as you progress through the lesson. When you are finished, you will submit the worksheet to your instructor according to their directions.
This lesson has been adapted from the New Literacy Alliance’s lesson, Reading Scientific Research, which is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.