Skip to Main Content

* Political Science & International Relations: Popular, Scholarly or Empirical?

This guide provides reliable resources pertaining to the study of political theory, international relations, information on foreign governments, U.S. and international policy research, campaigns and elections and more. This guide includes access to books,

Is My Source Scholarly?

Source Level

Here are a few criteria for determining if your source is scholarly:
Author(s) credentials - are they experts working or teaching in this field of study?
Length - is it a few brief paragraphs or a longer, more substantive article?
Language - is it written for other scholars in the field?  Do they used specialized or technical language specific to this field of study?     
References - is the author(s) citing other scholars in this field of study? Do they have a robust reference list?
Journal or Book Type - If it's a journal article, what kind of journal is the article is published in?  Is it a scholarly journal, or even peer reviewed?  If it’s a book, is it published by a university press or other well-respected commercial publisher known for publishing scholarly works?

Anatomy of a Literature Review Article

Image Source: Pixabay

Anatomy of an Empirical Research Article

Image Source: Pixabay

Identifying Empirical Research

EMPIRICAL RESEARCH EXERCISE - Identifying Empirical Research

Directions: Skim through the following articles* and determine if they are empirical research articles. Be prepared to justify your decision.

Base your decision using the following criteria: 
    •    Structure: Does it have methodology, results, and conclusions?
    •    Publication: Is it published in a scholarly journal?
    •    Perspective: Is it about the author(s) own research?

Cook, S., & Fortunato, D. (2022). The Politics of Police Data: State Legislative Capacity and the Transparency of
     State and Substate Agencies. American Political Science Review, 1-16. doi:10.1017/S0003055422000624

Haas, P. (2002). Nonprofits in Urban America. Edited. by Richard C. Hula and Cynthia Jackson-Elmoore. Westport,
     CT: Quorum Books, 2000. 235p. American Political Science Review, 96(1), 211-212. doi:10.1017/S0003055402314321

Kalla, J., & Broockman, D. (2022). Voter Outreach Campaigns Can Reduce Affective Polarization among Implementing
     Political Activists: Evidence from Inside Three Campaigns. American Political Science Review, 116(4), 1516-1522. 

Ting, M. (2021). The Political Economy of Governance Quality. American Political Science Review, 115(2), 667-685. 

*If the article link does not work for you, try using this Citation Search Tool to locate the article.

Instruction Session Handouts