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Grey literature

What is a scholarly blog?

Blogs (short for "web logs") are websites with regularly updated topical posts, usually written in an informal style. Scholars and practitioners are increasingly using blogs to share research, experiences, questions and comments with the broader community. Blogs allow you to access the conversation taking place in a particular discipline, between publications. The language is more accessible than that of a journal article, and posts can be written and published quickly. Unlike traditional formats, blogs allow the reader to engage the author in a conversation via the comments section.

Do you write a scholarly blog that you think we should know about? Contact us and tell us about it!

How do I evaluate scholarly blogs?

When evaluating a scholarly blog, be sure to use the RADAR checklist (from University of Waterloo):

Relevance: Is the information in the blog relevant to your work? Is it the best source for this information?

Authority: Can you identify the author (contact information, profile) and review their credentials (CV, list of publications, professional affiliations)?

Date: When was the information published? Is the blog regularly updated (this is clue to whether the blog is properly maintained)?

Accuracy: Does the author cite their sources? Do they argue their points civilly with readers? Is the site free of typographical errors?

Reason: Why was this information created? Is there a clear commercial, satirical, or political agenda?

Where can I find scholarly blogs?

International Law blogs



Maths education blogs

How do I find scholarly blogs?

There are millions of blogs out there - but not all of them are worth reading. You'll have to use your evaluation skills to determine relevance and quality. Here are a few ways to find interesting blogs in your discipline:

  1. To get started, see the lists of blogs by discipline, above.
  2. BlogSearchEngine: do a keyword search for your topic in this search engine.
  3. Google Blog Search: do a keyword search for your topic in Google News. After clicking on the Tools menu, you'll see an option appear in the toolbar for All News. Select the dropdown arrow next to All News and select the option for Blogs.
  4. Any blogs you enjoy will usually have referrals and links to other blogs.

How do I reference blogs?

The University Referencing Guide has examples for blogs.

The APA Style Blog has further examples that may be relevant.