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Critiquing An Article Essay Writing

Article critique

What is an article critique?

A critique is not (only) a criticism. A critique is a specific style of essay in which you identify, evaluate, and respond to an author's ideas, both positively and negatively. It is usually applied to academic sources.

  • Identify:
    • What is the article's background and purpose?
    • What is the main idea (the main argument) that the article is communicating?
  • Evaluate:
    • How convincing is the argument?
    • What does the argument assume?
    • How useful or applicable is the article?
    • How does the article compare with other current theory and research?
  • Respond:
    • What is your assessment of the article?
    • What issues does it raise?
    • What issues does it avoid?

You are expected to engage with the article rather than just summarize it, by considering its content carefully, and from different angles. Your critique must be objective, so support it with evidence rather than instinct or emotion.

As a tertiary student you are expected to read widely and develop analytical skills to assess what you read. When you engage in a critique you are demonstrating to your marker that:

  • You have read extensively
  • You can identify the particular strengths and weaknesses of those readings
  • You can identify different positions and perspectives in the readings
  • You are developing the skills and knowledge to engage with the experts
  • You are joining in a broader academic debate about an article's merits

Critiquing means that you are developing an understanding of more than a single article: it means that you are developing an understanding of the 'big picture', of the discipline as a whole. Later in your study you may be expected to contribute new understandings to the discipline, so it is important to understand the current state of knowledge.

Writing a critique

The process of critiquing an article involves reading it critically, that is, actively responding to the reading. Begin by asking questions about the article. What is, for example, its:

  • Background?
  • Purpose?
  • Use of evidence?
  • Methodology?
  • Balance?

This is covered in detail in the section on critical reading.

The structure of an article critique is typically the same as for an essay.

References and further reading

Page authorised by Director, CTL
Last updated on 5 February, 2018

How to Critique an Article

Every day students get dozens of new assignments of all shapes and kinds, so it is more that simple to get lost in all of the rules and guidelines. One of such tasks is a critique and often we are asked ‘what is an article critique’, as it is not a regular task and has some specific structural and content requirements.

If you want to learn how to critique an article, you should first have a clear understanding of what this assignment is about. Generally, it is an objective analysis of any piece of work (not depending on its genre), which includes your personal thoughts on the subject. You need to give the reader an idea of whether the author of an article based it on facts and credible information. Your main goal is to show your personal opinion, backed with evidence and arguments, so you need to be very attentive while reading the article and noting down key elements.

Many students fail to complete this task, as they simply provide a summary of the analyzed paper, forgetting about personal approach and challenging your own skills and knowledge. That is why it is so simple to make one of many mistakes, while completing an article critique. These mistakes may include:

  • Using only negative critique. Although your main aim is to analyze the article, you should add some positive features to dilute the overall impressive from your paper;
  • Excessive background information. Most of the readers already know what the article is about or who its author is, so don’t waste too much time and energy on providing boring information on the subject itself and biography or publishing details;
  • Not including the main argument. Many students forget about this important element and simply try to summarize the whole article. However, main argument is an essential part of your work and you need to include it at the beginning of your paper to make sure everyone knows what your position on the subject is.

If you follow all the recommendations, you will easily complete an outstanding article critique without any efforts!

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Article Critique Example

One of the ways of simplifying the whole process of completing the assignment is using an article critique example. Many students decide to download such samples in order to get an overall idea of how the assignment should look like and what key points should be added.

Using an example may greatly help you to create a proper structure, use necessary formatting methods and shape the whole work according to professor’s demands. It is your way of making the whole process of creating an article critique simple and fun, following all the common rules and regulations. With the help of such samples you will be able to save lots of times and nerves, which will definitely contribute to the overall results.

APA Format Article Critique

It is not a secret that most of professors pay careful attention not only to the content of the assignment but also how well it is formatted. That is why you need to be very attentive, when shaping your work and adding final changes. One of the most popular formatting styles, while completing an article critique is American Psychological Association (APA) format, which has its specific rules and guidelines. Your paper should be double-spaced, using 1-inch margins and Times New Roman font in 12 point. The general structure of your critique should consist of a title page, abstract, body and references. When formatting the title page, you should indicate name of your paper and school, as well as your personal data.

Article Critique APA

Article Critique Example

Article Critique Format

Article Critique Samples

Critique Essays Examples

Examples of Article Critiques

APA format article critique follows a clear structure:

  • Abstract. This section should consist of a brief summary of the critique you are going to provide. Write down how it will influence the reader and what analysis methods were used. This paragraph should be 15-250 words long with centered word ‘Abstract’ at the top;
  • Body. On the next page center the title of your work and start providing necessary details, not forgetting to double space the text. Here you should include mistakes you have found in the article, methods you have used and so on;
  • References. This section may include only the paper you are analyzing but you shouldn’t forget about the formatting style you are going to use. Write the reference in such an order: last name of the author, initials, publication year, title of the article, name of the journal in italics, volume, page numbers if necessary.

In-text citations should be made using the author-date system, which means that you only need to indicate name of the author, followed by the year of publication. If you want to quote a certain part of the paper, you need to include the page name at the end.

If you know how to write an article critique, you will easily complete the assignment not depending on its complexity and formatting peculiarities.

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