In scholarship, a primary source is defined as “original research material that is directly related to your topic and therefore supports your paper’s argument or hypothesis.” In order for a source to be considered a primary source, it must meet certain criteria. The source must be original, meaning that it is from the time period being studied or is an eyewitness account of an event. The source must also be directly related to your topic.
A primary source could be a number of things, including but not limited to:
- A research study or experiment report
- A diary or journal
- A letter or correspondence
- An early account or eyewitness report of an event
- Creative works such as poetry