A peer-reviewed journal is a scholarly publication in which experts discuss research and analysis in a particular field of study. In order to identify whether an article comes from a peer-reviewed journal, one can look for the following things:
The title of the publication often includes the word “journal.”
The article usually contains headings to label sections of the article, such as abstract and methodology.
The reader will notice domain-specific vocabulary or jargon that might be difficult to understand without knowledge of the field.
The text will contain numerous citations that refer to other bodies of research from experts in the field.
The intended audience of the article is the same as the author: an expert in their field of study. For instance, an article about an analysis of a work of literature is directed at literary scholars.
A peer-reviewed article will have been evaluated by a number of experts who reached a consensus that the article in question was worthy of publication. One traditional way of determining whether an article was peer-reviewed is to consult the masthead of the publication and note how articles are submitted.