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COM 110 - Communication as Critical Inquiry

This guide, developed specifically for students enrolled in COM 110 and COM 110.01, provides strategies and content for finding resources, introducing types of information, evaluating sources, and citing in APA.

Trade / Professional

A trade publication is somewhere between a scholarly journal and a popular magazine. Articles in trade journals are written by and for people working in a certain field or discipline, for example, grocers, nurses, teachers, or business administrators. Article authors typically have some specialized knowledge, but are not scholars.

Articles in trade publications are often easier to understand than articles in scholarly journals but are focused towards a specific group of people resulting in some use of professional terminology. Like articles in popular magazines, articles in trade journals are usually reviewed by professional editors.

Characteristics of Trade / Professional Articles

A clipart image of a non-gendered person sitting at desk with a computer.

What is the purpose?
Provides news and trends in a field, but not original research; showcases leaders in the field

Why use them?
Stay up-to-date on trends, breakthroughs, and mover-&-shakers within a field; useful for job hunting or interviewing

Who is it for?
Written for practicing professionals in almost any field or industry

Who writes the article?
Written by industry professionals and experts

Who reviews the article?
While reviewed by editorial staff, they are rarely peer-reviwed

What type of language or writing is used?
Uses jargon or terminology specific to the field or industry

Are other sources used and cited?
Sources are often mentioned within an article but not typically formated as a bibliography or footnotes

Are images and advertising included?
Illustrations, charts, graphs, photographs and sometimes graphic art that is relevant to article; advertising aimed specifically to profession or industry

How often are issues of articles published?
Varies greatly and can range from daily to weekly to monthly