Peer reviewed sources are those that have been vetted by scholars in a given field. For example, before a peer reviewed, or refereed, journal will publish an article, it is first sent to a handful of scholars in that field to conduct a blind review. They will often return the article with suggestions for improvement before recommending that the journal publish the article. This is considerably different than popular magazines and other sources that do not employ such rigorous publishing standards. The result is a higher level of scholarship than might otherwise be published.
Many of our journal databases offer the ability to limit to peer reviewed sources. You may wish to take advantage of this feature to pull out some of the best scholarship that matches your search.
For more information about evaluating sourcesto find out if they are peer-reviewed, please seeIs It Peer-Reviewed?, which is maintained by Karen Lamson of MCPHS University.