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BIOL4733: Nutrition (Merk)   Tags: biology, nursing  

Last Updated: Mar 5, 2014 URL: http://libguides.westga.edu/nutrition Print Guide RSS Updates

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Research Paper: What is a primary source?

You are to prepare 4-6 page research paper on a nutrition related topic of your choice.  You must include at least two primary sources.

 Primary sources are original documents containing original information about the subject being studied. In the natural sciences, primary sources include scholarly (peer-reviewed) articles and papers presented at conferences.  They will generally outline the actual methods, data, and conclusions that the original scientists made.

Secondary sources are commentaries, analyses, or interpretations of primary sources. An example of a secondary source is a review article, which summarizes current research on a topic and analyzes previously published work. For this reason review articles are a good place to get ideas about a topic.

Primary and secondary sources can change depending on the discipline. A scholarly article is a primary source in biology, but it could be a secondary source in history or art. An article analyzing Ann Frank's diary or Van Gogh's Starry Night would be a secondary source, as the diary and the painting are primary sources.

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