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Library and online research resources in physics

Primary Articles

In a primary science article, the authors are reporting results of their own experiment or investigation.

Primary scientific literature often has a "Methods" section and "Results" section describing a specific study.

Papers usually start with an introduction which provides background information. A description of what was done follows: the materials or methods used and sampling procedures. A discussion places the work in a larger theoretical context and may suggest further research.

Review Articles

A physics review article is an overview of research bringing together results of many primary articles.  It may be described as a literature review or a meta-analysis.  Review articles typically have very extensive bibliographies.

Peer Reviewed or Scholarly Articles

When an article is submitted to a peer reviewed journal, the editors send it out to other scholars in the same field (the author's peers) to get their opinion on the quality of the scholarship, its relevance to the field, its appropriateness for the journal, etc.

Both primary and review articles can be peer-reviewed.