Is Medium.com Peer Reviewed? (Answered & Explained)

When I need to cite a source for an article I’m writing, Medium articles almost always come up in the search results.

But can you cite them? Is Medium.com peer reviewed?

No, Medium.com is not peer-reviewed. Anyone can publish articles on Medium, regardless of their credentials. There is no established peer review process that Medium articles go through before they get published on the platform. Do not cite Medium articles as a source of validated research.

Yet, you may be able to use and cite Medium in some cases.

Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about Medium and peer review.

5 Reasons Medium.com Articles Are Not Peer-Reviewed

(This post may have afilliate links. Please see my full disclosure)
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I created this picture with Jasper Art and Canva – Is Medium.com Peer-Reviewed?

Here are the top five reasons you shouldn’t rely on Medium articles to be peer-reviewed:

  1. Medium.com does not have a formal peer-review process in place.
  2. The articles on Medium.com are not typically subjected to the same level of scrutiny as articles in peer-reviewed journals.
  3. The authors of Medium.com articles are not generally required to disclose their qualifications or affiliations.
  4. Medium.com articles do not always include reference sources or citations.
  5. The quality of the editing and proofreading on Medium.com can be inconsistent.

No formal Peer-Review Process

While the site does have some quality control measures in place, such as a minimum word count and a team of editors who curate the featured stories, it does not utilize a peer-review process.

This means that anyone can publish an article on Medium.com, no matter their qualifications or expertise.

While this lack of vetting can lead to some low-quality content, it also makes the site a more democratic and open platform for sharing ideas.

So while you may not find peer-reviewed articles on Medium.com, you may find some interesting and thought-provoking writing from a diverse group of people.

Not Scrutinized for Accuracy

As anyone who has ever written for a peer-reviewed journal knows, the process of getting an article accepted can be long and arduous.

First, you have to write a draft that is generally acceptable to the editors and reviewers.

Then, you have to go through the editing and review process, which can involve multiple rounds of revisions. Finally, if your article is ultimately accepted, it undergoes a rigorous fact-checking process before it is published.

I’ve been a part of this process several times for peer-reviewed articles I’ve co-written.

In contrast, articles on Medium.com are not subjected to the same level of scrutiny. While there are some quality control measures in place, there is no formal review process for most articles.

As a result, articles on Medium.com can be published more quickly and with less effort than articles in peer-reviewed journals.

However, this also means that they are not subject to the same level of scrutiny, which could lead to errors or inaccuracies.

No Disclosure Requirements

Medium.com allows anyone to write and share articles on a variety of topics.

This can be seen as positive or negative, depending on your perspective.

On the one hand, it allows anyone to share their opinions and ideas without having to worry about whether they are “qualified” to do so. On the other hand, it can make it difficult to know whether the author is an expert on the topic or whether they have a hidden agenda.

Just because an author doesn’t disclose their qualifications doesn’t mean that their article isn’t worth reading.

But it’s also important to do your own research and not pretend that everything on Medium is peer-reviewed.

No References

There is a clear lack of reference sources or citations in articles on Medium.

Without these elements, it is difficult to determine the accuracy or validity of the information presented in an article. This can be problematic, especially if the article is discussing sensitive topics such as health, finances, or politics.

Therefore, a lack of references means that Mediu is not peer-reviewed.

Inconsistent Editing Quality

If you’re a regular reader of Medium, you may have noticed that the quality of the articles can be somewhat inconsistent.

While some are well-written and free of errors, others are full of typos and bad formatting.

This can be frustrating for readers and researchers, as it can be difficult to know which articles to trust. Unfortunately, this inconsistency can also lead to the spread of false information.

Check out this video I made answering the question, “Is Medium.com Peer Reviewed?”:

YouTube video by WritingSecrets – Is Medium.com Peer Reviewed?

Can You Cite Medium Articles?

You can, but you usually shouldn’t. Medium articles are not generally scientific.

When you’re writing a paper or working on a project, you want to make sure that you’re using reliable sources. After all, you don’t want your work to be discredited because you used an unreliable source.

Articles on Medium are not peer-reviewed, and they may not be accurate.

So, if you’re looking for reliable sources to cite, you’re better off sticking to scientific journals or other reputable publications.

However, if you do decide to cite a Medium article, make sure to double-check the information to ensure that it’s accurate.

Is Medium.com a Scholarly Source?

No, it isn’t. Some articles include citations but most do not.

Medium.com is often lauded as a go-to source for high-quality, well-written articles on a variety of topics. And it’s true that the site does host some excellent writers who produce thoughtful, insightful pieces.

However, Medium.com is not a scholarly source, and you should not use it as such in your research.

If you’re looking for reliable, authoritative information for your research project, you’ll need to look elsewhere. I’ve listed a few research repositories that I regularly use later in this article.

Is Medium.com Trustable for Research?

Yes, sometimes, but with major caveats.

Some authors on some topics are trustable. I’ve learned a lot about freelancing, coding, and technology, for example.

However, there are better sources for most scientific papers to cite.

While Medium is a great place to find interesting perspectives on a variety of topics, the site lacks the editorial oversight of more traditional news sources.

As a result, it’s important to take caution when using Medium as a source for research.

While there are certainly some authors on Medium who are reputable and trustworthy, it’s important to remember that anyone can write on the site. This means that you should always evaluate the author’s credentials and track record before taking their word as gospel.

For important documents, you’ll generally be better off sticking with more traditional sources.

Can Starred Medium Articles Be Taken As Valid References?

No, probably not.

A starred profile or article only means that the article is for paying Members only. Articles in bigger publications, like Better Marketing and The Start Up are generally more trustable, but not peer-reviewed for research citations.

If you’re looking for a reputable source for your research paper, you’re probably not going to find it in a starred Medium article.

Starred articles may be well-written and informative, but they haven’t been peer-reviewed or vetted in the same way as articles from research publications.

How To Cite Medium Articles in APA

If you’re writing a paper for school and need to cite a Medium article, you can use the American Psychological Association (APA) citation format.

Here is a basic template for citing a Medium article in APA style:

Author’s last name, First initial. (Year published). Article title. Journal Name, Volume number (Issue number), pp.-pp. DOI or URL

For example, if you were citing this article, the correct APA citation would be:

Here is a full example of a Medium article in APA:

Kokoski, C. (2021, February 9). How I increased my medium earnings by 1,340% in 30 days. Retrieved September 11, 2022, from https://medium.com/the-candid-cuppa/how-i-increased-my-medium-earnings-by-1-340-in-30-days-ce5f4fd57dea

Finally, don’t forget to include in-text citations whenever you use a quote or paraphrase from another source. If you’re curious whether or not to italicize an article title, we have a good article that deep dives into that topic (with examples).

Cite Medium Article BibTeX

You can use BibTeX software to reference a Medium article.

The BibTeX entry for Medium would look like this:

@misc{medium, title = {{Medium}}, url = {https://medium.com/}, journal = {Medium}, author = {{Medium}}, year = {2017}, }

You can also use this tool to automatically create a bibliography for your Medium articles.

Simply select the “Bibliography” tab on the left-hand side of the screen, and then select “Create Bibliography.”

This will typically generate a list of all the sources you’ve used in your article, which you can then copy and paste into your paper. Pretty cool.

Medium Alternatives for Peer-Reviewed Research

There’s no doubt that peer-reviewed research is important. But what happens when you can’t find what you’re looking for in a peer-reviewed journal?

Where do you turn?

Here are a few alternative sources of research that can be just as valuable as peer-reviewed journals:

  • Google Scholar. This search engine specifically designed for scholarly literature can be a great way to find research on your topic.
  • University Libraries. Don’t forget about your local or online university library. They likely have access to many more research resources than your local public library.
  • Government Websites. Government websites are a goldmine of information. You can often find detailed studies and reports on a variety of topics.
  • Industry Websites. In some cases, industry websites may have the most up-to-date information on your topic. For example, if you’re researching the latest trends in web design, checking out a few key websites in the industry is a good idea.

Don’t let the lack of peer review stop you from finding the information you need.

These alternative sources can be just as valuable as traditional peer-reviewed journals.

Final Thoughts: Is Medium.com Peer Reviewed?

Ultimately, you have to be very careful about trusting any information on Medium.

Personally, I wouldn’t cite Medium except as a last-ditch effort to save my article (and maybe not even then). It would be better to use Medium as a “middle-man” to find original source documents from other more scientific or educational sites.

If you are interested in using Medium, check out the curated playlist of articles below I made just for you.

Read these next:

Sources

PubMed (Research repository)

How To Write A Review Post
How To Write A Review Post