An article critique is also referred to as a response paper. It is a formal evaluation of a journal article or any other type of scientific, literary content. The idea is to show whether the author presented reasonable arguments and fact for his major point. Critiques have been widely used in evaluating a variety of works like novels, exhibits, films images, poetry, monographs, journal articles systematic reviews, theories, news reports, feature articles and so on. You can find any article critique example you want from the internet.
Just like a formal essay, article critique uses a formal academic writing style and has a clear structure that comprises of the introduction the body and conclusion. The body of the critique is a summary of the work and detailed evaluation. It gauges the usefulness or the influence of the work in a specific field.
Reasons for critiques
When you write an article or any other critique you assist in the:
- Development of knowledge in the subject area of the work or related work
- Create an understanding of the work’s purpose, target audience, argument development, structure of evidence or creative style
- Recognizes the strengths and weaknesses of the work
Before you even start your paper critique, consider the following aspects:
- The specific topic of the work, its overall purpose, and the target audience.
You can use the preface; the acknowledgements, bibliography, and index as you provide answers to those questions. Do not ignore facts about the background of the author and the circumstances of creating that work and publication because they are necessary in knowing how to critique an article.
- Think about how the author states an explicit thesis. Does she have an axe to grind? Consider his theoretical assumptions and show if they are explicitly discussed. Once again, you can look for statements in the preface, acknowledgements and so on. You can later follow them up in your work.
- Consider the contribution of the author to the overall topic of your course and the general concepts and problems in your discipline it engages in. use any article critique example to see how others have written this.
- Think about the types of materials that the work presents. Are they primary documents or secondary material, observation, quantitative data, biographical or historical accounts?
- In your article critique show how the material has been used to demonstrate and argue the thesis. You have to indicate the overall structure of the entire work. You can quote or summarise specific passages to demonstrate the characteristics of the author’s presentation that includes the writing style and tone.
- Identify alternative ways of arguing from the same material and how the author’s awareness of them. Show the instances where the author agrees or disagrees.
- Consider the theoretical issues and topics for further discussions raised by the work.
- How do you consider your reactions and opinion on the work?
When you are writing a critique, the idea is to engage the article instead of summarising it. Consider its content carefully and from every perspective. The paper that you write must be objective and as such, you must support it with evidence instead of instinct and emotion.
You have to read widely and develop your analytical skills to assess whatever you read even an article critique example. When writing an article critique, you are demonstrating that:
- You have read extensively
- You can identify specific strengths and weaknesses of the text that you read
- You have the ability to identify different positions and perspectives in the text
- You are developing your skills and knowledge to engage with experts
- You are joining the broader academic debate about the merits of an article
An article critique shows that you are developing a sound understanding of more than one article. It is a means by which you are able to develop your understanding of the bigger picture of the discipline at large. At times, you may be required to contribute to a new understanding of the discipline, and so it is imperative you understand the current state of knowledge.
Writing the article critique
The concept is simple, but there are students who may be wondering what an article critique is. The professor might not add any additional instructions after the initial explanation. The assumption is that you will read the article and discuss it from a critical point of view. This is a correct assumption, but the article critique is much more complex than what students would expect. This is what a good article critique is supposed to deliver:
- A critique of the article that goes beyond the summary
Students make the mistakes of providing just the summary of the article they have read. Most of the journal articles have summaries, and your instructor does not want to get that. They are looking forward to your opinion on the piece.
- Provide your impression of the article backed by evidence that supports your points
- Identify the main articles idea and clarify its background and purpose
- Focus on the issues raised in the article as well as the one it avoids
Steps of writing your article analyze
- Active reading
You cannot write an article critique of something which you have not read. When you read an article, it creates an understanding on which you can base your argument. Most of the journal article is lengthy and have technical terms that at some point you may not understand. This makes simple reading inadequate, and as such, you must engage in active and close reading. This is usually accompanied by some research to help you in defining the terms that are new to you. You have to observe facts and details about the text, identify the major argument pf the author and the arguments they used to support it. You must have a marker, and somewhere you can take down notes. You have to identify the following research aspects as you read the article:
- Research problem and research problem and research goal
- Research methods
- Research participants
- Major findings
You have to read the article severally before you are done with this stage. During the reading process, you will discover new layers as well as new ideas to critique. Ensure you note those ideas too because that is knowledge of how to critique an article. Do not make them brief. Remember that this is a complex type of an academic paper. It is advanced text analysis, and you can forget your ideas during the writing process. Reading and taking notes will take time, but you will minimise the obstacles in the actual writing process if you are willing to make this sacrifice.
- Formulate a preliminary outline
Having understood the article, you have plenty of information in your notes. It is not time to organise them into a preliminary outline. It is considered as such because the process of critiquing is not done This outline gives you an idea of how you are going to discuss your points
- Poke holes in the main arguments of the author
The first thing that your instructor will look out for is how you question the main points of the author. He has to ascertain that you understood the difference between a summary and an analysis. Remember that this article critique is not a summary but an analysis from a critical perspective. You must create a convincing discussion, and this is done by identifying if the message of the author was logical. This calls for additional research since you do not have the entire knowledge base essential for your analysis of the researcher’s work. Other questionable aspects include the research methods, the results, discussion, and the stylistic elements.
- Identify contradictions
This is achieved after one reads the article. Biases can be intentional or not and as such, contrary evidence might be ignored or misrepresented, or it will be turned to the researcher’s advantage. This bias can emanate from prejudices. Take note of any bias, and you will find contradictions. If an author mentions another person’s work, check the source. You will be able to find weak points to include them in your article.
- Write your critique
Disclose your main argument in the introduction and provide the title of the article you ate critiquing. Write the body paragraph in a manner that expands the new point of the article. Use subheading for this is not a short article. Each paragraph should have a topic sentence that develops further into the paragraph that shows how to critique an article.
Summarize your arguments in the conclusion and suggest its potential implication. Recommend further research to help shed more light on the issue.
Article critique can be a daunting task, but it is one academic task that students can manage well.