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W131: English Composition: Professional/Trade Journals

Professional/Trade Checklist

Here is a quick checklist of criteria to help you determine if a resource is Professional or Trade:

  • Article length varies.
  • Citations or footnotes? Optional.
  • Articles may provide author names or may be anonymous.
  • Intended for specific audiences.
  • Advertising may be geared to a special audience.

Professional Magazines & Journals

Professional Magazines or Journals

A professional magazine or journal is one produced by a professional organization and tailored to the interests of its members. Professional magazines present news and analysis, editorial comment, and book reviews of interest to the association's members and often take the form of newsletters. 

In some fields, they also present extensive professional development articles for the improvement of skills. The level of writing and execution can sometimes be quite high, approaching the scholarly. This sort of professional journal can be very useful to both practitioners of a professional and to college students who are engaged in professional preparation.

EXAMPLES OF PROFESSIONAL MAGAZINES:

Education WeekTeaching Pre-K-8
Monitor on PsychologyNAEA News
NCTM Bulletin

Trade Magazines & Journals

Trade or Industry Magazines

A trade journal or trade magazine is a periodical published with the intention of marketing ideas, products, or services to a specific industry or type of trade/business. The collective term for this area of publishing is the trade press.

Trade and industry journals typically contain advertising content focused on the industry in question with little if any general-audience advertising. They also generally contain industry-specific job notices, a highly pertinent aspect to many readers.

Many trade publications can also be considered news magazines with a very specific topical focus. Some trade journals operate under controlled circulation, meaning the publisher decides who may receive complimentary subscriptions based on each individual's qualification as a member of the trade. This allows a high level of certainty that advertisements will be received by the advertiser's target audience.

In some instances, the boundary between trade publication and peer-reviewed journal has blurred. One such example is BioTechniques, which contains peer-reviewed technical reports and technology reviews while containing heavy advertising content, a significant proportion of the articles being authored by or in collaboration with vendors who advertise in the same issue. 

EXAMPLES OF TRADE MAGAZINES

BillboardVariety
Advertising AgeBeverage World
Automotive NewsProgressive Grocer