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Table of Contents

  1. Journal Definition & Meaning
  2. What Is a Journal?
  3. 10 Types of Journal
  4. Journal Uses, Purpose, Importance
  5. What’s In a Journal? Parts?
  6. How to Design a Journal?
  7. Journal vs. Conference Paper
  8. What’s the Difference Between a Journal, Magazine, and Newspaper?
  9. Journal Sizes
  10. Journal Ideas and Examples
  11. FAQs
  12. More in Journal


Journals can be handy for an individual since, every once in a while, there are some moments in life that should be documented or kept track of. Recording them in this paper is one way of doing so.

Journal Definition & Meaning

A journal is defined as an account of day-to-day events, a record of current transactions, or a record of experiences or reflections kept for private use instead of public use.

For personal uses, they can be written on a daily basis (in print or when you log in online) and are meant to collect an individual’s ideas and observations on any number of events and document them each day in writing.

What Is a Journal?

A journal is a record that contains everything, from someone’s daily thoughts on events that already happened or someone’s feelings concerning their private life. It can range from a research journal to a simple newspaper. By placing everything in a journal, whether online or in print, an individual has the opportunity to keep track of what the person did, what he/she thought, and what was happening at a particular point in time.

10 Types of Journal

Education Journal

Journals also have a purpose in the academic world. Education journals are designed for students and teachers with the purpose of keeping track of their lessons and activities. It usually isn’t so cluttered in design to maintain maximum simplicity and effectiveness.

education journal

Vintage Journal

A vintage journal is one particular example of a personal journal. This type of journal is usually simple in its purpose and only usually contains an individual’s to-do list and schedule along with his/her daily thoughts (usually in a bullet list). This is called a vintage journal since its elements (such as graphics and fonts) are made to look like they are from the distant past.

vintage journal

Writer Journal

A type of journal that can help someone in the professional world is a writer’s journal. This is usually made by someone who’s in the filmmaking industry, especially by a screenwriter. A writer’s journal usually consists of a summary of ideas of the project they’re working on as well as their thoughts on it.

writer journal

Travel Journal

A journal can also be handy for an individual who likes to go from one place to another on a frequent basis. This comes in a form of a travel journal and is used to keep track of someone’s significant details or events during their travels. This type of journal usually lists the date of travel, the destination site, a trip checklist, and any notes or events that can be recorded.

travel journal

Photography Journal

Another journal that can help someone in the professional world is a photography journal. This is handy for photographers who want to keep track of their progress and activities in their field or studio work. This type of journal contains a checklist of things to shoot, the camera being used (professional camera or phone camera), the recording date, and the photographer’s work notes.

photography journal

Real Estate Journal

A real estate journal is designed to work well for someone who specializes in the real estate business. Its purpose is to help with an individual’s tasks in their work as well as serve as a record of their service and their milestones. Like an education journal, it usually is simple in its design so that it works effectively.

real estate journal

Music Journal

For someone who likes music a lot and wants everything to be kept track of, a music journal might be the perfect notebook for them. This journal is usually used by music instructors and students to keep track of important matters regarding music. Its overall layout is usually consistent with the theme of music, such as having the notes/scales to be practiced on, the specific goals he/she can achieve in the music lesson, and any important notes to be recorded.

music journal

Recipe Journal

People who want to get experimental with their cooking may make use of a recipe journal to keep track of everything they’ve done. This type of journal is usually designed for cooks and enthusiasts to write and experiment with new recipes. Its layout is also designed to make it easier for them to keep track of their tasks and usually details their recipe in full, such as the ingredients to buy in the market, cooking time, and so on.

recipe journal

Dance Journal

People who dance frequently can make use of a dance journal during their activities. This type of journal is used to keep track and note an individual’s dancing activities and exercises. It usually contains a checklist of the dance steps and warmups to be performed, the practice dates, and any related notes.

dance journal

Sports Journal

A sports journal works well for someone who likes to engage in different sports activities or for someone who participates in a sports clinic. This type of journal is designed to effectively keep track of someone’s training regime. This can be important so that individuals know where they can focus in terms of sports sessions to improve their health and well-being.

sports journal

Journal Uses, Purpose, Importance

Journals are one of the simple record-keeping methods used by individuals to take note of what’s happening around them and their thoughts on it. It can be used for medical reasons, research purposes, academic reasons, and so on. Here are some other purposes and importance that having a journal can bring.

Permanent Progress Report

Journals are important since nearly all of us have a tendency to forget our progress in what we do every day. This includes everything from our milestones to our challenges. By having a journal, we are reminded of our progress and we can have something to look back on every now and then.


In the economic industry (ex., wall street), journals have great importance in accounting. This is because journals are used as a physical record that can be a notebook, a spreadsheet, or data within a specific accounting or financial software database. Whenever a business transaction occurs, it gets logged by the bookkeeper as a journal entry.

Enhance Writing Skills

Pretty much anything improves with practice over time and that includes our writing skills. Recording a journal every day gives us opportunities to practice and improve our writing skills. Additionally, our communication skills can also improve alongside our writing skills.

Personal Growth

No matter what you end up writing in the journal you keep, and whether you give everyone access to it or not, it almost always serves as a stepping stone to grow from it. This is probably the best thing about writing journals. In other words, no matter the purpose, the impact is it’ll make you grow as a person.


Recording a journal enables us to look back on what we’ve done. By looking back, we now know what to do when we begin to look forward. As a result, everything becomes more articulated and every step of what we do is easier to see by writing it down in a journal.

What’s In a Journal? Parts?


This part of a journal dictates its purpose, indicating if it’s a science journal, a medical/medicine journal, a natural biology journal, and so on.


If a journal is used for professional purposes, then the company logo can be present as well.


This part of the journal indicates when the contents of the journal were written/logged.

Main Body

The main body of the journal is where the main entries are logged and depending on the type, which can be a checklist of things to do, a list of milestones, a list of recipes, and so on.


This part of the journal details the individual’s thoughts and/or notes regarding the events/details being listed in the main body.

whats in a journal parts

How to Design a Journal?

1. Choose a journal size.

2. Decide on the journal’s purpose.

3. Pick a journal template.

4. Modify the written contents of the template according to your purpose.

5. Add the necessary graphics and lay them out properly.

6. Finalize and download.

how to design a journal

Journal vs. Conference Paper

In academic terms, a journal is usually an article that undergoes a peer review and is presented in journal books and periodicals.

Meanwhile, a conference paper is a concisely created paper that is usually presented at research conferences.

What’s the Difference Between a Journal, Magazine, and Newspaper?

A journal is a periodical that is aimed at specialists and is best used for reference citation since it contains peer-reviewed content by various experts in a particular field/association.

A magazine is a subscription-based periodical written for a general audience and usually contains advertisements, striking graphics, opinions, an entertainment factor, and personal narratives and usually comes in editions.

A newspaper is a subscription-based periodical (usually delivered through mail) that can be printed or digital media and contains a series of short articles relating to current events (hence the name “news”) and contains different sections, such as classified advertisements, obituary sections, sports news, and so on.

Journal Sizes

Here are the most common journal notebook sizes that are in use:

journal sizes

Journal Ideas and Examples

Here are some unique and creative journal ideas and examples that can help you should you be on the search for a specific design:


What is a journal of a paper?

A journal of a paper (scientific paper) is usually a peer-reviewed article about a certain topic and usually contains expertly written content by researchers and can be found in a library.

What is an editorial of a journal?

An editorial section is an article that is written by a senior editor or a member of the senior editorial team of a periodical such as a journal.

What is the structure of a journal?

A typical structure of a journal for personal purposes consists of the title of the journal, the date, the main body, and the notes and thoughts of the person writing the journal regarding a specific event.

What are the elements of a journal?

The elements of a journal largely depend on what type of journal it is since a journal used for recipes contains details regarding a certain recipe, a journal regarding travel tracks someone’s events during a journey, and so on.

What are the major sections of a journal article?

The major sections of a journal article include the abstract, the introduction, the methods, the results, the discussion, and the references.

What are the rules of a journal?

The rules of a journal entry in accounting state that debit and credit must be equal and an entry must affect two accounts in a double-entry bookkeeping system.

What is the best way to journal?

The best way to journal is to do it every single day while making it easy for yourself.

What is a junk journal?

A junk journal is a journal that is made from recycled and found materials (usually things found in a barn).

What is bullet point journaling?

Bullet point journaling is a system of organization that involves organizing schedules, reminders, to-do lists, and other tasks into a single notebook.

What do you write in your journal?

It depends on the purpose; for music journals, you usually write the musical exercises to be practiced and your thoughts on them while in a dance journal, you usually write your dancing activities and exercises.

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