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How to Write Article Summaries, Reviews & Critiques

Writing an article CRITIQUE

A critique asks you to evaluate an article and the author’s argument. You will need to look critically at what the author is claiming, evaluate the research methods, and look for possible problems with, or applications of, the researcher’s claims.

Introduction

Give an overview of the author’s main points and how the author supports those points. Explain what the author found and describe the process they used to arrive at this conclusion.

Body Paragraphs

Interpret the information from the article:

  • Does the author review previous studies? Is current and relevant research used?
  • What type of research was used – empirical studies, anecdotal material, or personal observations?
  • Evaluate the sample group. Can you detect any problems in terms of size, composition, or the way participants were selected?
    • Was the sample too small to generalize from?
    • Was the participant group lacking in diversity (race, gender, age, education, socioeconomic status, etc.)
    • Does the way in which volunteers were found influence the results?
      • For instance, volunteers gathered at a health food store might have different attitudes about nutrition than the population at large.
  • How useful does this work seem to you? How does the author suggest the findings could be applied and how do you believe they could be applied?
  • How could the study have been improved in your opinion?
  • Does the author appear to have any biases (related to gender, race, class, or politics)?

  • Is the writing clear and easy to follow? Does the author’s tone add to or detract from the article?

  • How useful are the visuals (such as tables, charts, maps, photographs) included, if any? How do they help to illustrate the argument? Are they confusing or hard to read?
  • What further research might be conducted on this subject?

Conclusion

Try to synthesize the pieces of your critique to emphasize your own main points about the author’s work, relating the researcher’s work to your own knowledge or to topics being discussed in your course.

From the Center for Academic Excellence (opens in a new window), University of Saint Joseph Connecticut

Additional Resources

All links open in a new window.

Writing an Article Critique (from The University of Arizona Global Campus Writing Center)

How to Critique an Article (from Essaypro.com)

How to Write an Article Critique (from EliteEditing.com.au)

How to Write an Article Critique Like a Pro (from Citetotal.com)