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How to read a scholarly article: Home

Article structure and reading strategy

Articles generally follow this structure:

  1. Abstract: Summary of the whole article
  2. Introduction: Why they did the research
  3. Methodology: How they did the research
  4. Results:  What happened
  5. Discussion: What the results mean
  6. Conclusion: What they learned
  7. References:  Whose research they cited

Should you read the article in order?  Not necessarily.  Here is the order we recommend:

  1. Abstract
  2. Discussion / Conclusion
  3. Introduction
  4. Methodology / Results

Article structure in detail