Secondary Sources. A secondary source of information is a document or recording that was created by an individual who did not experience first-hand or participate in the historical event being discussed or in the formation of an artifact. When conducting research, secondary sources typically provide scholarly information about a select topic that has been analyzed, interpreted, and/or evaluated. Thus, this source type does not substitute an original event or artifact, but assists in learning more about them.
Primary Resources. A primary source is an original source or artifact that provides evidence of a person, culture, historical event, or time period. This might exist as a document, diary, oral account, manuscript, autobiography, recording, architectural structure, or work of art. These types of primary sources were created by a person(s) with direct knowledge and experience of an event, or to serve a specific purpose during their lifetime. Primary sources are typically housed in museums and archives.
Peer-Reviewed. Peer review is the evaluation of an article or book by one or more scholars. It establishes a process for editing and verifying one's research by having qualified members of the same profession review your work in order to maintain standards of quality and provide credibility.
Scholarly Credibility. A scholarly article or book that contains content written by experts in a particular field of study. Some details to look for when determining whether a source is credible are as follows:
Database. A database is an online, organized collection of data covering a variety of designated topics indexed using subject terms. They typically offer access to encyclopedias, reference materials, articles, images, secondary and primary sources, etc. The resources provided are always scholarly, and written by credible experts in the field.