Finding Background Articles

What is a Background Article?

Background articles are non-academic or non-scholarly articles from the popular press (magazines, newspapers, etc.) that are used to provide basic information on your topic for your presentation. These sources help you explain the basics of your topic that won't be covered in the more complex scholarly research and review articles you find in PubMed.

Background Articles can help you answer questions like:

  • What are the symptoms that mark a variation of this gene?
  • How is life different for someone with this generic variation?
  • What social or legal implications are there of testing for this genetic variation?

Finding Background Articles

Articles and More...

Be sure to check off "Include newspaper articles" after you search. Then use the format limit to see Magazine Articles or Newspaper Articles

Separating the Background Information from the Research

The vast majority of magazine and newspaper articles you will encounter will be discussing new research pertaining to the topic. These article often contain lots of useful background information about the variation or condition and are great to include in your paper...


You should not use these articles to discuss new research in the field. This is the job of the research and review articles you get from PubMed. If you want to discuss a new study or research in the field in your paper you need to find the scholarly article where the researchers published their findings.