(See "Evauluating Resources" for other types of scholarly content.)
Scholarly articles are often referred to as "academic" or "peer reviewed" articles.
Generally speaking these articles distinguish themselves from popular magazine articles, e.g. Time Magazine, New Republic or Consumer Reports, or trade publication articles, e.g. Bank Security Report, or Corrections Today or Computer Crimes Digest, by the academic scrutiny they require.
Articles for a scholarly journal undergo a peer review process. That is, the articles are reviewed by a group of scholars from the discipline represented by the journal's stated focus. Acceptance of an anticle into a scholarly journal requires the approval of these reviewers. On the other hand, articles in trade or consumer publications do not undergo this level of scrutiny, requiring the approval only of a single editor who may or may not have any expertise in the area on which the article is written.
How about an easier way to identify a scholarly article.
Most research literature databases (a perfect example is SocINDEX) enable limiting your search to scholarly or peer reviewed articles. See the graphic below:
The resources below offer assistance on judging the value of articles, books and other resources you hope to use for your research.
The "World of Information" tutorial is particularly comprehensive as a resource for determining scholarly content.