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AFS 201

A Library Research Guide for AFS 201

Determining if a Journal Is Peer-Reviewed:

Peer-review refers to a scholarly publishing process where authors who are doing research submit a paper they have written to a journal. The journal editor then sends the article to the other scholars who are knowledgeable of the research field. Those reviewers determine if that article should be published based on the quality of the research, the validity of the data, the conclusions the authors' draw, and the originality of the research. Typically the names of the author(s) and reviewers are kept private.


Note: Determining if an article is peer-reviewed can occasionally be confusing. Not everything published within a peer-reviewed journal is necessarily peer-reviewed. For example, peer-reviewed journals might have book reviews or editorials within them (that may not be peer-reviewed). When in doubt, ask your instructor or a librarian.


How to Determine if a Journal is Peer-Reviewed

Method #1

Look in the WSU Libraries' Catalog 

The WSU Libraries' catalog (Search It) will display a peer-reviewed tag if an article or journal is peer-reviewed.

WSU Libraries' Peer Review Tag Display



Method #2

Check the Publisher's Website

Typically the journal website will have information regarding whether it is a peer reviewed publication. That info is generally found in an "About" section.


Homepage of a typical scholarly journal


Information on the journal website stating that the journal is peer-reviewed


Method #3

Search the Ulrich's Directory

Ulrich's Directory is a directory of journals which provides information regarding if a journal is peer-reviewed, open access, its place of publication, etc. 

Peer-Reviewed journals in Ulrich's will have a referee icon next to the title if the journal is peer-reviewed, like in the picture below:

Ulrich's search interface


This video was created by the Walden Libraries and explains how to search Ulrich's to see if a journal is peer-reviewed. 


Method #4

Email me and I'll take a look at the publication. You can email me using this link (my contacts are in the upper left side of the page) .


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