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Primary Sources

What are primary sources?

Primary sources are comprised of data collected and published for the first time for research purposes. In other words, the author(s) have collected the information for the first time by conducting interviews, observing situations, surveying people, collecting archival data (from original documents and authentic artifacts), undertaking scientific or technical research in the lab, and so on. One common type of primary research is market research. Researchers use this research to make firsthand discoveries.

What are secondary sources?

Secondary sources interpret and analyze primary sources. Some examples of secondary sources are journal articles, textbooks and encyclopedias. Depending on the type of research project you are doing, secondary sources may be all that you need. It is important to get an idea from the assignment or your professor for what is required.