Skip to Main Content

CJ 2255: Methods of Criminal Justice Inquiry

This is a class guide for CJ 2255

Getting Started--About Research Articles

Journal articles are either primary or secondary research. Primary research refers to original research.

Primary research, or Empirical research, records direct observations or experiences.  Empirical research can be analyzed quantitatively or qualitatively. Empirical research is published in books and in scholarly, peer-reviewed journals.

Most library databases do not offer straightforward ways to locate empirical research. Using "empirical" as a keyword will find some studies, but miss others. Some useful keywords are:

  • Case Studies
  • Empirical Research
  • Interviews
  • Qualitative Research
  • Quantitative Research
  • Surveys
  • Research

In any database always choose “Advanced Search.” Most databases allow you to limit your results to Document Type and/or Publication Type. You will find these categories if you scroll down on the advanced search page.

Video Tutorials

Need Help?