Answered By: Jenna Troidl
Last Updated: May 18, 2020     Views: 8

What is an original research or single study article, and how do I find it in the library databases?


An article is considered original research if:

  • it is the report of a study written by the researchers who actually did the study.
  • the researchers describe their hypothesis or research question and the purpose of the study.
  • the researchers detail their research methods.
  • the results of the research are reported.
  • the researchers interpret their results and discuss possible implications.

To find an original research article in the library databases:

  1. Start your search from the Search Everything tab on the library homepage.
  2. Enter your keywords and hit search. 
  3. Use the limiters under the Limit To section to the left of the search results to select Academic (Peer-Reviewed) Journals and publication date range 2015-2020. 
  4. Read the abstract of the articles to determine if it is original research. The abstract of the article usually contains subdivision headings where each of the key sections are summarized individually such as Literature Review or Background, Methods, Results, Conclusions, and Discussion. The methodology section will tell you what they are doing in the study. Note: There is no way to limit the results to only show original research articles in this search system. 

For more information on types of research, see our Reading and Understanding Scholarly Articles guide.