Journal or Magazine? How Do I Tell?

Journal or Magazine? Here’s how to tell…
  Scholarly Journal General Nursing Magazines
Popular Magazine
Appearance Articles are research-oriented. Few pictures. Illus­trations take the form of charts and graphs. Few ads. Articles are news-oriented, cover trends in the field, etc. Some illus­trations are included, usually charts, graphs, etc. Trade-specific ads. Articles are meant to inform and entertain. Illus­trations are numerous and colorful. Lots of adver­tising.
Audience Written for experts, researchers, other scholars Written for profes­sionals within the field or industry (education, business, etc.) Written for a popular / general audience, or in some cases, an educated layperson
Authors Scholars and researchers. Authors’ credentials are included Staff writers or contrib­uting authors. Some articles may be anonymous. Journal­ists, staff writers, or contrib­uting authors. Some articles may not be credited.
Biblio­graphy Authors cite their sources in endnotes, footnotes, or biblio­graphies. Often includes an abstract. Authors often mention sources, but rarely formally cite them in biblio­graphies.

Articles almost never have biblio­graphies.

Account­ability Articles are peer-reviewed No peer-review process No peer-review process
Frequency of Publica­tion Often monthly or even quarterly (every three months). Usually monthly, although some business news­papers may come out weekly Often monthly or even weekly (like Time and Newsweek magazines)
Examples Journal of Nursing Education; Nursing Research; WJNR (Western Journal of Nursing Research) Adweek; Advertising Age; Chemical and Engineering News; Nursing; RN; Successful Farming Better Homes and Gardens; Newsweek; Rolling Stone; Time