I have to do a systematic literature review (SLR) as part of a university course. I have found all search terms etc, but now I have to narrow down the search to research articles. I've been stuck for a week, since each database has its own name for these papers and I'm not sure which publication/source type to select from each database, so they are all correct and comparable.

Below I have listed each database and the different publications they have:

  • ACM: "proceedings" vs "journals" vs "research articles"
  • Google Scholar: "review articles" vs well, non-review articles
  • IEEE Xplore: "conferences" vs "journals"
  • ScienceDirect: "research articles" vs "review articles"
  • Scopus: "article" vs "conference paper" vs "conference proceeding" vs "journal"
  • Springer: "conference paper" vs "article" vs "conference proceeding"

Thanks for any advice. Best regards

PS: If I had to choose, I'd take ACM (research articles), Google Scholar (review articles), IEEE Xplore (journals), ScienceDirect (research articles), Scopus (article), Springer (article)

1 Answer 1


If I understand your question correctly, you seem to be stuck on the term "research articles" as if that describes a specific genre of article. But it does not. It can mean many different things. I suspect that what it means is "peer-reviewed articles" (as opposed to practitioner studies or non-peer-reviewed scholarly articles), but you will need to clarify from your professor precisely what they mean by the term. I am sure that they will be able to clarify this for you. Since this is a school assignment, then it really does not matter much what answers you might receive from here (including my answer); what matters is that you correctly understand what your professor means. So, ask your professor for clarification.

  • Hi, Thanks for your answer! The professor said it's up to me to find the correct publications.... If you could answer, if I choose the following publications/articles from these databases, I think they are coherent in terms of research quality and usability for a systematic literature review? ACM (research articles), Google Scholar (review articles), IEEE Xplore (journals), ScienceDirect (research articles), Scopus (article), Springer (article) Dec 14, 2022 at 10:54
  • I find it odd that the professor would not clarify such a basic question. But I think you should search for "peer-reviewed articles" in each database. Sorry, but I am not able to check each of the databases you have listed to see what terminology each one uses, but the notion is a peer-reviewed article. These might be both journals and conference articles.
    – Tripartio
    Dec 14, 2022 at 11:09
  • Thank you very much for your answer! :) Dec 14, 2022 at 15:56
  • @QuarterlyReport, if this answer answers your question, please click the check mark to accept it.
    – Tripartio
    Dec 14, 2022 at 19:12

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .