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How to Critique a Research Article

How to Critique a Research Article
January 25, 2019

For the research article critique, one has to briefly summarize and evaluate the attached educational article in order to find out how to critique a research article. This critique assignment should be completed individually. You have to write a brief article summary in your own words. In order to get a good result, it is important to rephrase the content. The work on such an assignment is a great exercise used for the final project’s literature review.
In the written summary, you should recognize the main elements of the research:

  1. Hypothesis;
  2. Problem of the research;
  3. Research questions;
  4. Objective of the research;
  5. Research method (explain);
  6. Variables;
  7. Sample (participants);
  8. Tools (surveys, instruments, and tests);
  9. Main findings (summary of the results);
  10. Conclusion.

The article critique should be two-three pages (around 1,000-2,000 words) long. The critique is longer than the summary and special attention should be paid to the design and procedure. The final grade for this work will depend on the right answers to some questions, which will be discussed below.
There is no need to address all of the questions. No doubts that the highlighted questions should be answered first.
The paper format does not have to be like a Q & A list. Instead, the answers should be integrated into the essay format that is similar to the provided examples.

Introduction Problem

  1. Is it possible to find a problem statement?
  2. Is there the background information to the problem?
  3. Can the problem be researched?
  4. Does the problem statement specify about the variables of interest and the relationship between the investigated variables?
  5. Is there a discussion of problem’s educational significance?

Review of Related Literature

  1. How many sources were used? Primary? Secondary? 
  2. Is the review comprehensive?
  3. Are all of the used references relevant to the investigated problem?
  4. Is there a short summary of the critique review?
  5. Were the references analyzed critically?
  6. Do the discussed implications form the theoretical or empirical rationale for the hypotheses?

Hypotheses

  1. How can you describe the hypotheses?
  2. Are there specific questions listed or specific hypotheses stated?
  3. Can you test the hypothesis?
  4. In which way are the variables defined? Directly or operationally?

Method Subjects

  1. Make sure the method of selecting the sample is clearly defined.
  2. The sample size should meet the optional guideline for least sample size.
  3. The major features of the population and its size should be well-defined.
  4. Give the answer to this question: Did you have volunteers?
  5. Describe the technique of the sample choice.
  6. Define the size and main characteristics of the sample.

Instruments

  • Is each instrument described (content and purpose)?
  • Are the designated instruments suitable for determining the intended variables?
  • Is the rationale to select the tools (or measurements) used?
  • Does the evidence show that each tool fits for the sample under learning?
  • Have you discussed instrument validity (if appropriate)?
  • Is reliability discussed?
  • Are subtest reliabilities provided?
  • Are the procedures involved in validation and development described?
  • If a tool was established for the study, are management, recording or tabulating, and interpretation procedures defined?

Procedure and Design

  • Is the design meant to answer the questions or test the study hypotheses?
  • Did the researcher discuss any possibly confusing variables that he or she was having difficulty in controlling?
  • Are the procedures, described in details, meant to be replicated by other researchers?
  • Are the control procedures defined?

Results

  • Was the probability level specified in advance of the data analyses?
  • Are descriptive statistics accessible?
  • Is the data in each figure described in the text?
  • Are inferential statistics accessible?
  • How well were the tests of significance defined?
  • Do you find proofs that the researcher followed all the rules and made all the required assumptions for parametric tests?
  • Are the tables and figures (if any) organized clearly?
  • Are the significance tests interpreted with the appropriate degrees of freedom?
  • Was every hypothesis tested?
  • Are the results presented clearly?

Discussion (Conclusions and Recommendation)

  • Did you include recommendations for the further actions?
  • Is each result discussed based on the original hypothesis?
  • Are overviews consistent with the results?
  • Have you talked about theoretical and practical usage?
  • Have you stated the conceivable properties of uncontrolled variables?
  • What about the recommendations for future actions? Did you consider real-world implication or on statistical significance?
  • Is every result taken into consideration based on its agreement or disagreement with previous results?
  • Did you give any commendations for the future research?

In a research article critique, it is important to cover the following questions:

  • Evaluate the method of sampling and the sample used in this study.
  • Describe the used procedures. Evaluate them accordingly.
  • Why is the research important?
  • How was the data analyzed?
  • Describe the reliability of all the used instruments.
  • What type of research is this?
  • How can this research be improved?
  • What is (are) the major finding(s)? Are they important?

Article Critique: What Is a Critique

Students know that one of the things that keep happening to them are new assignments; some may think ‘what is a critique?’ What should I write? An article critique is one of the responsibilities that students have to work on.
A critique can be explained as an unbiased kind of analysis of a specific literary piece. The reviews are usually not systematic tasks. If you are interested to learn key steps in writing an article critique, you should keep in mind some of the important principles.
To be a professional in preparing an article critique, one has to confirm that he/she suggests to the audience an interesting idea for consideration. It is important to note that as you present your thoughts, you are supposed to support them. The main objective is to present your individual opinion on the article by using arguments and evidence.

Key Things Not to Include in Article Critique

Many students make mistakes throughout the procedure of writing a critique. The main mistake is that they incline to provide reviews of the analyzed articles without including a personal approach. As a result, there are myriads of various mistakes, which students make. Some of the mistakes that students make due to the lack of knowledge include:

Using Only Negative Critique

The important aspect to think about while writing a critique is harmonizing between the positive and negative remarks of the article. Even though the main goal is to analyze the article, make sure that you increase some positive points, so that the general impression of the work will be well-achieved.

Writing Detailed Background Information

Many of your readers are aware of the article topic, as well as the personal information about the author. Thus, use your energy and time wisely in order to provide interesting data on the subject of the discussed article, omitting various unnecessary details and the author’s profile.

Forgetting About the Main Argument

Numerous learners overlook to include this significant element and attempt to recap the whole article. Some students forget or cannot comprehend that the key dispute is an essential idea in a critique of a research article. An article summary should be incorporated at the beginning of the essay; hence, all readers will have a means to know your position on the subject.

How to Format and Write a Critique Essay

Knowing how to format and write a critique essay is essential, as the majority of professors usually pay very close attention to it. Thus, it is important to be especially attentive and careful when designing the paper and working on the final touches. When writing critiques, students use such formatting styles as MLA and APA. These styles have their specific rules and guidelines that have to be closely followed to get a good grade.
In our example of the research article critique, we will use the format that is recommended by most professors - the APA formatting. The format requires double-spaced text, with 1-inch paper margins, and Times New Roman font (size 12). The critique essay’s overall structure includes the following parts: body paragraphs, an abstract, a title page, and the references used in the bibliography. A student has to specify the title and institutional affiliation alongside the private data.

As soon as you have finished that, it is time to do APA format for an article critique, as displayed below:

  •  Abstract

Here, there has to be a summary of the critique’s content. It is necessary to comprise the analysis means that were used while working with it. The essay abstract usually consists of 150 to 250 words. Also, the word “Abstract” should be centered at the second page.

  • Body

You should write your critique, and include the positive and negative comments about the article’s content. Remember to add the approaches that were used to examine the content.
The body of the essay should hold the following sectors:
a) Evaluation
The evaluation helps to see how convincing the critique essay is. Also, a writer should highlight the way the article critique sample can be practical.
b) Identification
This part of the work requires a writer to identify such aspects as article’s purpose and background. In addition, it is recommended to add the insight of the critique essay’s key idea.
c) Response
In the responding section of the essay’s body, you have to explain the article’s general assessment. The valuation has to include the subjects raised by the article review, as well as those that it avoids.
It is essentially important to remember that while working on an article critique in APA, your goal is to be appealing with it, as an alternative of just presenting a summary. Please, make sure that you examine the article’s content and format and view it from all possible angles. Thus, when studying about writing a critique article, you should constantly be impartial. Do your best so that the APA style article critique will have all the upkeep that you can discover from authorized sources and support it with the objective evidence.

  • Conclusion and References

The article should have a conclusion that states one more time all the main points, while concurrently showing to readers the essence of essay critique to a specific field of specialization. Afterwards, you should add a reference list, in which all used sources are presented. It is important to cite used sources according to the APA, unless a professor indicates that a different style is to be used.

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