Academic sources include books from academic publishers, peer-reviewed journal articles, and reports from research institutes. Academic sources are usually found in journals specialized in specific disciplines or in academic publishers, such as The Journal of Educational Behavior or Columbia University Press. This usually only happens in high-quality university journals and publishers, although many other reputable publishers that usually publish educational and academic texts also have a peer review process. The most important piece of advice that academics want to give to their first-year students is usually to use the library as their only source of reference for their essays and assignments until they have a solid understanding of the types and quality of sources that are acceptable for their discipline.
Unfortunately, many students are still confused about what exactly an academic source (or an academic source) is and what is the best way to find one. The first search results also usually indicate if they currently work or have worked as academics at a university, which, of course, is another way of verifying that their work is respectable. If an article is published in an academic journal that is not peer-reviewed, it may be academic, but it may not. The best way to find academic sources is to physically go to the university library, if it's possible.
While it's good practice to ensure that you use only academic sources in your research and essay writing, it's even better to also ensure that those sources are peer reviewed, as this will ensure that they are of higher quality and highly regarded in your field. These are some important keys and techniques that will help you identify which sources are credible, academic and, above all, academic. In journalism and media studies, of course, you may often need to refer to media sources, which are certainly not academic sources. In some cases, you might find an academic's work published on a separate website, such as their blog. Fellows have advanced degrees, such as master's degrees or terminal degrees, and they conduct research to advance their respective academic fields.
There may be cases where it is acceptable to use a non-academic source, but these will be special cases and are more common in some academic disciplines than in others. Once you acquire these skills, you can safely access the Internet and ensure that you don't jeopardize your grades or the quality of your research by relying on inappropriate or inaccurate non-academic sources.