Worksheet: Identifying Academic Sources

Skill Focus: identifying academic sources

ESL Area: EAP, college, writing, research

Worksheet Download: finding-academic-sources-worksheet.docx

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An academic source is a study or article that has been published by an academic publication (book or journal). In this publication process, the work is peer-reviewed, thereby ensuring it has met a certain standard in research/accuracy.

This is a simple worksheet that asks students to review a list of URLs and determine which are academic sources. Afterwards, they are asked to find an academic source of their own. For answers, see below.

Worksheet Preview

Conducting Research: Identifying Academic Sources





  1. Book: Time Management by Mike Hardy (Preview here: )






Part 1: Questions

A) Which of the above sources are academic peer-reviewed sources?


B) Which source(s) is/are the least reliable and therefore unsuitable for an assignment? What makes them seem unreliable?


Part 2: Finding a Source

Imagine you are writing an essay on the value of punctuality (being on time). Find an academic source on this topic and paste its link or information below.



Optional Extension

If you want students to practice writing an APA (or MLA) Reference entry, you could include a question in Part 1 asking students to write Reference page entries for each academic source.

Worksheet Answers

  • Part 1 A) Sources 3 and 4 are academic peer-reviewed sources. Source #2, from Harvard, is not peer-reviewed.
  • Part 1 B) Source 5 seems like the least reliable. Clues: advertisements and memes abound, tone is not serious, lack of in-text citations/references, etc.

I hope you find this worksheet useful for your classes.

– Matthew Barton / Creator of (copyright)

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