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This tutorial defines popular sources and indicates ways to search for these popular sources from the UW-Madison Libraries’ homepage.
“Popular source” does not mean how many times a source has been clicked, liked, or cited. The term “popular”, in terms of sources, typically refers to general interest publications like newspapers and magazines. While not considered scholarly sources, some newspapers and magazines come from respected publications that can be used in certain assignments. If allowed for an assignment, magazines and newspapers can provide simplified descriptions of scholarly research, background information, or sometimes stories, opinion pieces, images, or more personal points of view on a topic. These can help bring life and interest to some projects and just need to be evaluated for reliability.
There are many places to find magazines and newspapers, the type of popular sources referred to here. Many publications, such as the New York Times, Scientific American, Popular Science, or Fortune Magazine have their own websites. The UW-Madison Libraries also have access to several databases that contain articles from these and other similar magazines and newspapers.
Using a newspaper database
Using Academic Search