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Stony Brook University

Research Paper Help

The videos and other resources on this guide are designed to help you learn more about the research process. Learn about how to refine your topic, structure an effective search, use a database record, search on the open web, cite your sources, and more.

Creating Diverse Source Lists

How can you push back against dominant narratives in your research? Take a look at the ACT UP source evaluation method on the Evaluating Sources guide, created by Dawn Stahura at Salem State University. This method of source evaluation challenges us all to think critically about authors, currency, truth, bias, and privilege.

a snippet of an infographic that reads: "ACT UP Evaluating Sources Use the act up method to evaluation sources push against dominat narratives burst filter bubbles and oppressive citation circles"

Comparing peer-reviewed journals with other periodicals


Peer-reviewed journals


Newspapers and magazines



experts in specific fields

journalists, reporters, opinion writers


other experts, researchers, academics / professors, and students

general / non-professionals


for experts to communicate with other experts and advance knowledge in a subject or field

to educate the general public and generate revenue

Reference List


minimal or none


articles are selected based on rigorous peer-review process; publication process is slow

articles are selected based on review by editors; publication process is fast


Few or none


Writing Style

Written in the technical language of the field

Written in non-technical language and for the general public

Understanding different information formats

wordcloud containing different types of sources