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BIOL 201: General Biology III (Lentz)  

Last Updated: Jan 15, 2014 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts
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Scientific Publications

The Publication process: primary, secondary, and tertiary sources

Primary sources are original works by an author. Examples in biology include firsthand reports of research such as lab reports as well as many journal articles. Most new research in biology is published in the form of journal articles.

Secondary sources can be used to find references to primary sources. Books that are not the original work of the researcher are considered secondary sources.

Tertiary sources include guides to the literature and textbooks.

For academic research, it is often important to use peer-reviewed (or refereed) journals rather than popular magazines. Peer-review is the process by which a journal article is evaluated by experts in the field. An example of a peer-reviewed journal is Journal of Applied Ecology. An example of a popular magazine is Time.


Milne Library Research Guides

  • Biology
    Overview of Milne Library resources available for biological research.
  • Chemistry
    Overview of Milne Library resources available for research in chemistry.

Where to Find Articles

Journal Articles

The databases below are located on the Milne Library home page under the Databases tab.

  • Academic Search Complete
    Provides full text for about 8,500 periodicals including over 7,300 peer-reviewed journals across most areas of academic study as well as indexing and abstracts for more than 12,500 magazines and journals.
  • ScienceDirect
    Provides full text access to over 2200 Elsevier journals in many fields including biology. Registering for a free account allows the user to save searches and set up alerts for newly published articles for designated topics.
  • JSTOR archive
    Includes about 300 biology related journals. Due to copyright restrictions, the most recent 3 - 5 years are usually unavailable.
  • Academic OneFile
    Provides over 54,000,000 articles, most full-text, from about 13,000 scholarly journals across most academic subject areas. Coverage is from 1980 to the present. Provided by the New York State Library.
  • Google Scholar
    Does not search the same content as Google, but rather, concentrates on scholarly journal articles and books. Full text is available for many articles due to Milne Library subscriptions. A useful feature is the ability to ***see who cited an article***.
  • Biology Databases at Milne
    Additional database possibilities.
  • BioOne.1
    Provides full-text access to about 100 journals in the biological, ecological and environmental sciences. Includes high-impact bioscience research journals as well as some open-access titles. Provided by SUNY-Oneonta.

Need More Help?

E-mail a question to a Milne librarian & get a response within 48 hours Monday through Friday.

Schedule a research consultation with a librarian to discuss your research project in depth.

Call the Research Help Desk at Milne Library at 607-436-2722.

Visit the Research Help Desk in Milne Library.


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