Primary and Secondary Sources


Research projects often require primary and secondary sources.
Primary sources are original documents or objects - the actual material or first-hand information. Primary sources can include historical and legal documents, statistical data, empirical studies and art objects.
Secondary sources are things written about primary sources. These include interpretations, analysis and discussions about the original material. Secondary sources are second-hand information. Book reviews and articles in scholarly journals that evaluate another person’s original work or research are good examples.
Primary Source Examples
Secondary Source Examples
The Gettysburg address - original document A newspaper article discussing pros and cons of the address
The Constitution - original document A law book examining legalities of the constitution
"It" by Stephen King - original work
A book on critical analysis of Stephen King's "it" - Analysis of original work
The Mona Lisa by Da Vinci - original work of art
An encyclopedia of famous artists which include Da Vinci's "Mona Lisa"