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Muscat University based students: Journal articles

Why use journals?

From the First Year to the Final Year of your degree, your module lecturers will want to see that you have talked about research in journal articles in your assessments.

Journal articles are usually:

  • first hand reports of original research, making them primary source material
  • the first place where new research is published, so they are at the cutting edge of your subject
  • peer-reviewed, meaning that the articles have been critically evaluated by experts in the field before publication.

You can browse all the journal titles held at Aston University Library via the Journal A-Z list:

Search for resources using Library SmartSearch

Search for books, journals, articles and e-resources.

To start an in-depth search simply click on one of the links below, and follow any log-in requests using your Aston University username and password.  Depending on the database, a full-text article can be obtained by clicking on the PDF/HTML link or details of provision can be found by clicking on the Find it @ Aston button. 

What are academic (scholarly) jounals?

Notes on terminology

  • Journals are sometimes also referred to as periodicals or serials.
  • Some databases refer to peer-reviewed journals as scholarly journals or academic journals.
  • Some journals, eg. trade journals and industry magazines, are not always peer-reviewed.
  • Review articles in journals are summaries of the literature, ie. a secondary source.

Using Library SmartSearch to find..

How to find a journal article from a reference

The reference for a journal article usually looks something like this:

Author(s), (Year in brackets). Article title. Journal title in italics, Volume number (Issue number in brackets), Page numbers.

For example:
Clough, H., & Closier, A. (2018). Walking the talk: Using digital media to develop distance learners’ digital citizenship at the Open University (UK). Reference Librarian, Vol 59 (3), pp 129-133.

There are two main ways to find the full text of a journal article from a reference:

  • Type the article title into the Library SmartSearch (or your database of choice), and use Find it @ Aston button to access full text
  • Search for the journal title in the A-Z list of journals (link below)


When you find an article you would like to use in your piece of the work, the reference details can be found in the following way: