Take a few minutes to review the following chart. This will help familiarize or reinforce the differences in types of articles you will find as you conduct your research. For your graduate research, you'll want to focus primarily on scholarly/peer-reviewed articles. Being able to recognize alternate forms of articles is an important aspect of the research process.
The following are examples of varying types of periodicals in the field of coaching athletics. Link to the titles and choose an issue to see examples of the different types of articles within them. Specifically look at the length of the articles and how many sources are cited. These two factors are often key in recognizing when an article is or is not scholarly.
As you search in the databases, you'll see that sometimes results are categorized by article type, or you have the option to sort by article type. This can be a huge time-saver! If you can eliminate articles that won't be acceptable for your graduate level work, use the tools to do that.
At the same time...you can't always trust the category the database has used to identify the genre. It's meant to be used a guide, not the end-all answer. For example, the database might put a periodical into the Academic or Scholarly Journal category, but as a savvy researcher, you will need to determine if the article meets the criteria of a scholarly work. Just because the database says it doesn't make it so!