EPS 82: Introduction to Oceans

Campus Library Map

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UC Berkeley Library campus map

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Off-campus Access to Library Resources

Before you can access UCB Library resources from off campus or via your laptop or other mobile devices, make sure you have configured your machine using one of two simple methods (Proxy Server is the quickest and easiest):

Proxy Server
After you make a one-time change in your web browser settings, the proxy server will ask you to log in with a CalNet ID when you click on the link to a licensed resource. See the setup instructions, FAQ, and Troubleshooting pages to configure your browser.  Make sure you check the proxy configuration before you start researching.

VPN (Virtual Private Network)
After you install and run the VPN "client" software on your computer, you can log in with a CalNet ID to establish a secure connection with the campus network.

What is peer review?

Your assignment requires you to find peer-reviewed articles. These may also be called refereed articles. What does this mean?

Peer review is a process by which articles are subjected to rigorous and critical review by experts in the field prior to publication. It is a form of quality control. Generally, two or more expert reviewers (or referees) will evaluate an article to determine whether it is worthy for publication based on specific criteria:

  • Scientific validity
  • Sound methodology
  • Originality
  • Significance
  • Clarity

The process

  • A researcher submits his or her article to a specific journal.
  • The editor of the journal makes an initial determination: is it a good fit for the journal?
  • If so, the editor passes the article along to expert reviewers who evaluate the article and make recommendations
  • Reviewers may recommend immediate publication, publication with revisions, or rejection

Once an article is published in a peer-reviewed journal, it may appear in print, online, or both.

Peer review is not a guarantee

Articles that are peer-reviewed have been carefully evaluated by experts but this does not mean that everything in the peer-reviewed literature is correct. Results published in peer-reviewed articles may later be found to be unsound or may be contradicted by new findings. The continual re-evaluation of previous research findings is one of the primary mechanisms by which scientific understanding is advanced.

(Adapted from the Bio 1b Scientific Literature guide by courtesy of the Bioscience & Natural Resources Library)

Recognizing peer-reviewed articles

How can you tell if an article has been peer-reviewed? Try looking for clues in the article itself:

  • Are the authors listed? Is there also information about their affiliations?
  • Is there an abstract (or summary of the article)?
  • Are there sections on prior research, methodology, findings, conclusions, etc.?
  • Is there a bibliography or list of references in the article?
  • Is there information on when the article was received, accepted, and/or published?

Peer-reviewed articles may not exhibit all of these criteria but they can be good indicators of peer-review.

(Adapted from the Bio 1b Scientific Literature guide by courtesy of the Bioscience & Natural Resources Library)

Last Update: December 14, 2012 17:55