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How to Write an Article Critique Step-by-Step
20 Feb 2023
❓What is an Article Critique Writing?
📑Main Steps How to Critique Article
☝️Article Critique Outline
📝Article Critique Formatting
✒️Write a Journal Article Critique
📃 Write a Research Article Critique
🔍 Article Critique Research Methods
✅An Article Critique Tips
Do you know how to critique an article? If not, don't worry – this guide will walk you through the writing process step-by-step. First, we'll discuss what a research article critique is and its importance. Then, we'll outline the key points to consider when critiquing a scientific article. Finally, we'll provide a step-by-step guide on how to write an article critique including introduction, body and summary. Read more to get the main idea of crafting a critique paper.
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What is an Article Critique Writing?
An article critique is a formal analysis and evaluation of a piece of writing. It is often written in response to a particular text but can also be a response to a book, a movie, or any other form of writing. There are many different types of review articles . Before writing an article critique, you should have an idea about each of them.
To start writing a good critique, you must first read the article thoroughly and examine and make sure you understand the article's purpose. Then, you should outline the article's key points and discuss how well they are presented. Next, you should offer your comments and opinions on the article, discussing whether you agree or disagree with the author's points and subject. Finally, concluding your critique with a brief summary of your thoughts on the article would be best. Ensure that the general audience understands your perspective on the piece.
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How to Critique an Article: The Main Steps
If you are wondering "what is included in an article critique," the answer is:
An article critique typically includes the following:
- A brief summary of the article .
- A critical evaluation of the article's strengths and weaknesses.
- A conclusion.
When critiquing an article, it is essential to critically read the piece and consider the author's purpose and research strategies that the author chose. Next, provide a brief summary of the text, highlighting the author's main points and ideas. Critique an article using formal language and relevant literature in the body paragraphs. Finally, describe the thesis statement, main idea, and author's interpretations in your language using specific examples from the article. It is also vital to discuss the statistical methods used and whether they are appropriate for the research question. Make notes of the points you think need to be discussed, and also do a literature review from where the author ground their research. Offer your perspective on the article and whether it is well-written. Finally, provide background information on the topic if necessary.
When you are reading an article, it is vital to take notes and critique the text to understand it fully and to be able to use the information in it. Here are the main steps for critiquing an article:
- Read the piece thoroughly, taking notes as you go. Ensure you understand the main points and the author's argument.
- Take a look at the author's perspective. Is it powerful? Does it back up the author's point of view?
- Carefully examine the article's tone. Is it biased? Are you being persuaded by the author in any way?
- Look at the structure. Is it well organized? Does it make sense?
- Consider the writing style. Is it clear? Is it well-written?
- Evaluate the sources the author uses. Are they credible?
- Think about your own opinion. With what do you concur or disagree? Why?
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Article Critique Outline
When assigned an article critique, your instructor asks you to read and analyze it and provide feedback. A specific format is typically followed when writing an article critique.
An article critique usually has three sections: an introduction, a body, and a conclusion.
- The introduction of your article critique should have a summary and key points.
- The critique's main body should thoroughly evaluate the piece, highlighting its strengths and weaknesses, and state your ideas and opinions with supporting evidence.
- The conclusion should restate your research and describe your opinion.
You should provide your analysis rather than simply agreeing or disagreeing with the author. When writing an article review , it is essential to be objective and critical. Describe your perspective on the subject and create an article review summary. Be sure to use proper grammar, spelling, and punctuation, write it in the third person, and cite your sources.
Article Critique Formatting
When writing an article critique, you should follow a few formatting guidelines. The importance of using a proper format is to make your review clear and easy to read.
Make sure to use double spacing throughout your critique. It will make it easy to understand and read for your instructor.
Indent each new paragraph. It will help to separate your critique into different sections visually.
Use headings to organize your critique. Your introduction, body, and conclusion should stand out. It will make it easy for your instructor to follow your thoughts.
Use standard fonts, such as Times New Roman or Arial. It will make your critique easy to read.
Use 12-point font size. It will ensure that your critique is easy to read.
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How to Write a Journal Article Critique
When critiquing a journal article, there are a few key points to keep in mind:
- Good critiques should be objective, meaning that the author's ideas and arguments should be evaluated without personal bias.
- Critiques should be critical, meaning that all aspects of the article should be examined, including the author's introduction, main ideas, and discussion.
- Critiques should be informative, providing the reader with a clear understanding of the article's strengths and weaknesses.
When critiquing a research article, evaluating the author's argument and the evidence they present is important. The author should state their thesis or the main point in the introductory paragraph. You should explain the article's main ideas and evaluate the evidence critically. In the discussion section, the author should explain the implications of their findings and suggest future research.
It is also essential to keep a critical eye when reading scientific articles. In order to be credible, the scientific article must be based on evidence and previous literature. The author's argument should be well-supported by data and logical reasoning.
How to Write a Research Article Critique
When you are assigned a research article, the first thing you need to do is read the piece carefully. Make sure you understand the subject matter and the author's chosen approach. Next, you need to assess the importance of the author's work. What are the key findings, and how do they contribute to the field of research?
Finally, you need to provide a critical point-by-point analysis of the article. This should include discussing the research questions, the main findings, and the overall impression of the scientific piece. In conclusion, you should state whether the text is good or bad. Read more to get an idea about curating a research article critique. But if you are not confident, you can ask “ write my papers ” and hire a professional to craft a critique paper for you. Explore your options online and get high-quality work quickly.
However, test yourself and use the following tips to write a research article critique that is clear, concise, and properly formatted.
- Take notes while you read the text in its entirety. Right down each point you agree and disagree with.
- Write a thesis statement that concisely and clearly outlines the main points.
- Write a paragraph that introduces the article and provides context for the critique.
- Write a paragraph for each of the following points, summarizing the main points and providing your own analysis:
- The purpose of the study
- The research question or questions
- The methods used
- The outcomes
- The conclusions were drawn by the author(s)
- Mention the strengths and weaknesses of the piece in a separate paragraph.
- Write a conclusion that summarizes your thoughts about the article.
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Research Methods in Article Critique Writing
When writing an article critique, it is important to use research methods to support your arguments. There are a variety of research methods that you can use, and each has its strengths and weaknesses. In this text, we will discuss four of the most common research methods used in article critique writing: quantitative research, qualitative research, systematic reviews, and meta-analysis.
Quantitative research is a research method that uses numbers and statistics to analyze data. This type of research is used to test hypotheses or measure a treatment's effects. Quantitative research is normally considered more reliable than qualitative research because it considers a large amount of information. But, it might be difficult to find enough data to complete it properly.
Qualitative research is a research method that uses words and interviews to analyze data. This type of research is used to understand people's thoughts and feelings. Qualitative research is usually more reliable than quantitative research because it is less likely to be biased. Though it is more expensive and tedious.
Systematic reviews are a type of research that uses a set of rules to search for and analyze studies on a particular topic. Some think that systematic reviews are more reliable than other research methods because they use a rigorous process to find and analyze studies. However, they can be pricy and long to carry out.
Meta-analysis is a type of research that combines several studies' results to understand a treatment's overall effect better. Meta-analysis is generally considered one of the most reliable type of research because it uses data from several approved studies. Conversely, it involves a long and costly process.
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Tips for writing an Article Critique
It's crucial to keep in mind that you're not just sharing your opinion of the content when you write an article critique. Instead, you are providing a critical analysis, looking at its strengths and weaknesses. In order to write a compelling critique, you should follow these tips: Take note carefully of the essential elements as you read it.
- Make sure that you understand the thesis statement.
- Write down your thoughts, including strengths and weaknesses.
- Use evidence from to support your points.
- Create a clear and concise critique, making sure to avoid giving your opinion.
It is important to be clear and concise when creating an article critique. You should avoid giving your opinion and instead focus on providing a critical analysis. You should also use evidence from the article to support your points.
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Writing a critique involves more than pointing out mistakes. It involves conducting a systematic analysis of a scholarly article or book and then writing a fair and reasonable description of its strengths and weaknesses. Several scholarly journals have published guides for critiquing other people’s work in their academic area. Search for a “manuscript reviewer guide” in your own discipline to guide your analysis of the content. Use this handout as an orientation to the audience and purpose of different types of critiques and to the linguistic strategies appropriate to all of them.
Types of critique
Article or book review assignment in an academic class.
Text: Article or book that has already been published Audience: Professors Purpose:
- to demonstrate your skills for close reading and analysis
- to show that you understand key concepts in your field
- to learn how to review a manuscript for your future professional work
Published book review
Text: Book that has already been published Audience: Disciplinary colleagues Purpose:
- to describe the book’s contents
- to summarize the book’s strengths and weaknesses
- to provide a reliable recommendation to read (or not read) the book
Text: Manuscript that has been submitted but has not been published yet Audience: Journal editor and manuscript authors Purpose:
- to provide the editor with an evaluation of the manuscript
- to recommend to the editor that the article be published, revised, or rejected
- to provide the authors with constructive feedback and reasonable suggestions for revision
Language strategies for critiquing
For each type of critique, it’s important to state your praise, criticism, and suggestions politely, but with the appropriate level of strength. The following language structures should help you achieve this challenging task.
Offering Praise and Criticism
A strategy called “hedging” will help you express praise or criticism with varying levels of strength. It will also help you express varying levels of certainty in your own assertions. Grammatical structures used for hedging include:
Modal verbs Using modal verbs (could, can, may, might, etc.) allows you to soften an absolute statement. Compare:
This text is inappropriate for graduate students who are new to the field. This text may be inappropriate for graduate students who are new to the field.
Qualifying adjectives and adverbs Using qualifying adjectives and adverbs (possible, likely, possibly, somewhat, etc.) allows you to introduce a level of probability into your comments. Compare:
Readers will find the theoretical model difficult to understand. Some readers will find the theoretical model difficult to understand. Some readers will probably find the theoretical model somewhat difficult to understand completely.
Note: You can see from the last example that too many qualifiers makes the idea sound undesirably weak.
Tentative verbs Using tentative verbs (seems, indicates, suggests, etc.) also allows you to soften an absolute statement. Compare:
This omission shows that the authors are not aware of the current literature. This omission indicates that the authors are not aware of the current literature. This omission seems to suggest that the authors are not aware of the current literature.
Whether you are critiquing a published or unpublished text, you are expected to point out problems and suggest solutions. If you are critiquing an unpublished manuscript, the author can use your suggestions to revise. Your suggestions have the potential to become real actions. If you are critiquing a published text, the author cannot revise, so your suggestions are purely hypothetical. These two situations require slightly different grammar.
Unpublished manuscripts: “would be X if they did Y” Reviewers commonly point out weakness by pointing toward improvement. For instance, if the problem is “unclear methodology,” reviewers may write that “the methodology would be more clear if …” plus a suggestion. If the author can use the suggestions to revise, the grammar is “X would be better if the authors did Y” (would be + simple past suggestion).
The tables would be clearer if the authors highlighted the key results. The discussion would be more persuasive if the authors accounted for the discrepancies in the data.
Published manuscripts: “would have been X if they had done Y” If the authors cannot revise based on your suggestions, use the past unreal conditional form “X would have been better if the authors had done Y” (would have been + past perfect suggestion).
The tables would have been clearer if the authors had highlighted key results. The discussion would have been more persuasive if the authors had accounted for discrepancies in the data.
Note: For more information on conditional structures, see our Conditionals handout .
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How to Critique an Article: Mastering the Article Evaluation Process
Did you know that approximately 4.6 billion pieces of content are produced every day? From news articles and blog posts to scholarly papers and social media updates, the digital landscape is flooded with information at an unprecedented rate. In this age of information overload, honing the skill of articles critique has never been more crucial. Whether you're seeking to bolster your academic prowess, stay well-informed, or improve your writing, mastering the art of article critique is a powerful tool to navigate the vast sea of information and discern the pearls of wisdom.
How to Critique an Article: Short Description
In this article, we will equip you with valuable tips and techniques to become an insightful evaluator of written content. We present a real-life article critique example to guide your learning process and help you develop your unique critique style. Additionally, we explore the key differences between critiquing scientific articles and journals. Whether you're a student, researcher, or avid reader, this guide will empower you to navigate the vast ocean of information with confidence and discernment. Still, have questions? Don't worry! We've got you covered with a helpful FAQ section to address any lingering doubts. Get ready to unleash your analytical prowess and uncover the true potential of every article that comes your way!
What Is an Article Critique: Understanding The Power of Evaluation
An article critique is a valuable skill that involves carefully analyzing and evaluating a written piece, such as a journal article, blog post, or news article. It goes beyond mere summarization and delves into the deeper layers of the content, examining its strengths, weaknesses, and overall effectiveness. Think of it as an engaging conversation with the author, where you provide constructive feedback and insights.
For instance, let's consider a scenario where you're critiquing a research paper on climate change. Instead of simply summarizing the findings, you would scrutinize the methodology, data interpretation, and potential biases, offering thoughtful observations to enrich the discussion. Through the process of writing an article critique, you develop a critical eye, honing your ability to appreciate well-crafted work while also identifying areas for improvement.
In the following sections, our ' write my paper ' experts will uncover valuable tips on and key points on how to write a stellar critique, so let's explore more!
Unveiling the Key Aims of Writing an Article Critique
Writing an article critique serves several essential purposes that go beyond a simple review or summary. When engaging in the art of critique, as when you learn how to write a review article , you embark on a journey of in-depth analysis, sharpening your critical thinking skills and contributing to the academic and intellectual discourse. Primarily, an article critique allows you to:
- Evaluate the Content : By critiquing an article, you delve into its content, structure, and arguments, assessing its credibility and relevance.
- Strengthen Your Critical Thinking : This practice hones your ability to identify strengths and weaknesses in written works, fostering a deeper understanding of complex topics and critical evaluation skills.
- Engage in Scholarly Dialogue : Your critique contributes to the ongoing academic conversation, offering valuable insights and thoughtful observations to the existing body of knowledge.
- Enhance Writing Skills : By analyzing and providing feedback, you develop a keen eye for effective writing techniques, benefiting your own writing endeavors.
- Promote Continuous Learning : Through the writing process, you continually refine your analytical abilities, becoming an avid and astute learner in the pursuit of knowledge.
How to Critique an Article: Steps to Follow
The process of crafting an article critique may seem overwhelming, especially when dealing with intricate academic writing. However, fear not, for it is more straightforward than it appears! To excel in this art, all you require is a clear starting point and the skill to align your critique with the complexities of the content. To help you on your journey, follow these 3 simple steps and unlock the potential to provide insightful evaluations:
Step 1: Read the Article
The first and most crucial step when wondering how to do an article critique is to thoroughly read and absorb its content. As you delve into the written piece, consider these valuable tips from our custom essay writer to make your reading process more effective:
- Take Notes : Keep a notebook or digital document handy while reading. Jot down key points, noteworthy arguments, and any questions or observations that arise.
- Annotate the Text : Underline or highlight significant passages, quotes, or sections that stand out to you. Use different colors to differentiate between positive aspects and areas that may need improvement.
- Consider the Author's Purpose : Reflect on the author's main critical point and the intended audience. Much like an explanatory essay , evaluate how effectively the article conveys its message to the target readership.
Now, let's say you are writing an article critique on climate change. While reading, you come across a compelling quote from a renowned environmental scientist highlighting the urgency of addressing global warming. By taking notes and underlining this impactful quote, you can later incorporate it into your critique as evidence of the article's effectiveness in conveying the severity of the issue.
Step 2: Take Notes/ Make sketches
Once you've thoroughly read the article, it's time to capture your thoughts and observations by taking comprehensive notes or creating sketches. This step plays a crucial role in organizing your critique and ensuring you don't miss any critical points. Here's how to make the most out of this process:
- Highlight Key Arguments : Identify the main arguments presented by the author and highlight them in your notes. This will help you focus on the core ideas that shape the article.
- Record Supporting Evidence : Take note of any evidence, examples, or data the author uses to support their arguments. Assess the credibility and effectiveness of this evidence in bolstering their claims.
- Examine Structure and Flow : Pay attention to the article's structure and how each section flows into the next. Analyze how well the author transitions between ideas and whether the organization enhances or hinders the reader's understanding.
- Create Visual Aids : If you're a visual learner, consider using sketches or diagrams to map out the article's key points and their relationships. Visual representations can aid in better grasping the content's structure and complexities.
Step 3: Format Your Paper
Once you've gathered your notes and insights, it's time to give structure to your article critique. Proper formatting ensures your critique is organized, coherent, and easy to follow. Here are essential tips for formatting an article critique effectively:
- Introduction : Begin with a clear and engaging introduction that provides context for the article you are critiquing. Include the article's title, author's name, publication details, and a brief overview of the main theme or thesis.
- Thesis Statement : Present a strong and concise thesis statement that conveys your overall assessment of the article. Your thesis should reflect whether you found the article compelling, convincing, or in need of improvement.
- Body Paragraphs : Organize your critique into well-structured body paragraphs. Each paragraph should address a specific point or aspect of the article, supported by evidence and examples from your notes.
- Use Evidence : Back up your critique with evidence from the article itself. Quote relevant passages, cite examples, and reference data to strengthen your analysis and demonstrate your understanding of the article's content.
- Conclusion : Conclude your critique by summarizing your main points and reiterating your overall evaluation. Avoid introducing new arguments in the conclusion and instead provide a concise and compelling closing statement.
- Citation Style : If required, adhere to the specific citation style guidelines (e.g., APA, MLA) for in-text citations and the reference list. Properly crediting the original article and any additional sources you use in your critique is essential.
How to Critique a Journal Article: Mastering the Steps
So, you've been assigned the task of critiquing a journal article, and not sure where to start? Worry not, as we've prepared a comprehensive guide with different steps to help you navigate this process with confidence. Journal articles are esteemed sources of scholarly knowledge, and effectively critiquing them requires a systematic approach. Let's dive into the steps to expertly evaluate and analyze a journal article:
Step 1: Understanding the Research Context
Begin by familiarizing yourself with the broader research context in which the journal article is situated. Learn about the field, the topic's significance, and any previous relevant research. This foundational knowledge will provide a valuable backdrop for your journal article critique example.
Step 2: Evaluating the Article's Structure
Assess the article's overall structure and organization. Examine how the introduction sets the stage for the research and how the discussion flows logically from the methodology and results. A well-structured article enhances readability and comprehension.
Step 3: Analyzing the Research Methodology
Dive into the research methodology section, which outlines the approach used to gather and analyze data. Scrutinize the study's design, data collection methods, sample size, and any potential biases or limitations. Understanding the research process will enable you to gauge the article's reliability.
Step 4: Assessing the Data and Results
Examine the presentation of data and results in the article. Are the findings clear and effectively communicated? Look for any discrepancies between the data presented and the interpretations made by the authors.
Step 5: Analyzing the Discussion and Conclusions
Evaluate the discussion section, where the authors interpret their findings and place them in the broader context. Assess the soundness of their conclusions, considering whether they are adequately supported by the data.
Step 6: Considering Ethical Considerations
Reflect on any ethical considerations raised by the research. Assess whether the study respects the rights and privacy of participants and adheres to ethical guidelines.
Step 7: Identifying Strengths and Weaknesses
Identify the article's strengths, such as well-designed experiments, comprehensive, relevant literature reviews, or innovative approaches. Also, pinpoint any weaknesses, like gaps in the research, unclear explanations, or insufficient evidence.
Step 8: Offering Constructive Feedback
Provide constructive feedback to the authors, highlighting both positive aspects and areas for improvement for future research. Suggest ways to enhance the research methods, data analysis, or discussion to bolster its overall quality.
Step 9: Presenting Your Critique
Organize your critique into a well-structured paper, starting with an introduction that outlines the article's context and purpose. Develop a clear and focused thesis statement that conveys your assessment. Support your points with evidence from the article and other credible sources.
By following these steps on how to critique a journal article, you'll be well-equipped to craft a thoughtful and insightful piece, contributing to the scholarly discourse in your field of study!
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An Article Critique: Journal Vs. Research
In the realm of academic writing, the terms 'journal article' and 'research paper' are often used interchangeably, which can lead to confusion about their differences. Understanding the distinctions between critiquing a research article and a journal piece is essential. Let's delve into the key characteristics that set apart a journal article from a research paper and explore how the critique process may differ for each:
- Journal Article: Presents focused and concise research findings or new insights within a specific subject area.
- Research Paper: Explores a broader range of topics and can cover extensive research on a particular subject.
Format and Structure:
- Journal Article: Follows a standardized format with sections such as abstract, introduction, methodology, results, discussion, and conclusion.
- Research Paper: May not adhere to a specific format and allows flexibility in organizing content based on the research scope.
Depth of Analysis:
- Journal Article: Provides a more concise and targeted analysis of the research topic or findings.
- Research Paper: Offers a more comprehensive and in-depth analysis, often including extensive literature reviews and data analyses.
- Journal Article: Typically shorter in length, ranging from a few pages to around 10-15 pages.
- Research Paper: Tends to be longer, spanning from 20 to several hundred pages, depending on the research complexity.
- Journal Article: Published in academic journals after undergoing rigorous peer review.
- Research Paper: May be published as a standalone work or as part of a thesis, dissertation, or academic report.
- Journal Article: Targeted at academics, researchers, and professionals within the specific field of study.
- Research Paper: Can cater to a broader audience, including students, researchers, policymakers, and the general public.
- Journal Article: Primarily aimed at sharing new research findings, contributing to academic discourse, and advancing knowledge in the field.
- Research Paper: Focuses on comprehensive exploration and analysis of a research topic, aiming to make a substantial contribution to the body of knowledge.
Appreciating these differences becomes paramount when engaging in the critique of these two forms of scholarly publications, as they each demand a unique approach and thoughtful consideration of their distinctive attributes. And if you find yourself desiring a flawlessly crafted research article critique example, entrusting the task to professional writers is always an excellent option – you can easily order essay that meets your needs.
Article Critique Example
Our collection of essay samples offers a comprehensive and practical illustration of the critique process, granting you access to valuable insights.
Tips on How to Critique an Article
Critiquing an article requires a keen eye, critical thinking, and a thoughtful approach to evaluating its content. To enhance your article critique skills and provide insightful analyses, consider incorporating these five original and practical tips into your process:
1. Analyze the Author's Bias : Be mindful of potential biases in the article, whether they are political, cultural, or personal. Consider how these biases may influence the author's perspective and the presentation of information. Evaluating the presence of bias enables you to discern the objectivity and credibility of the article's arguments.
2. Examine the Supporting Evidence : Scrutinize the quality and relevance of the evidence used to support the article's claims. Look for well-researched data, credible sources, and up-to-date statistics. Assess how effectively the author integrates evidence to build a compelling case for their arguments.
3. Consider the Audience's Perspective : Put yourself in the shoes of the intended audience and assess how well the article communicates its ideas. Consider whether the language, tone, and level of complexity are appropriate for the target readership. A well-tailored article is more likely to engage and resonate with its audience.
4. Investigate the Research Methodology : If the article involves research or empirical data, delve into the methodology used to gather and analyze the information. Evaluate the soundness of the study design, sample size, and data collection methods. Understanding the research process adds depth to your critique.
5. Discuss the Implications and Application : Consider the broader implications of the article's findings or arguments. Discuss how the insights presented in the article could impact the field of study or have practical applications in real-world scenarios. Identifying the potential consequences of the article's content strengthens your critique's depth and relevance.
What Steps Need to Be Taken in Writing an Article Critique?
To write an article critique, start by thoroughly reading the article to understand its main arguments and supporting evidence. Evaluate the author's perspective, writing style, and potential biases. Assess the article's contribution to the field and offer constructive feedback. Organize your critique coherently, highlighting strengths, weaknesses, and implications. Remember to provide evidence and examples to support your analysis, contributing valuable insights to the academic discourse.
What Is the Recommended Length for an Article Critique?
The length of an article critique typically ranges from 800 to 1,200 words. However, this can vary depending on the specific requirements set by the instructor, journal, or publication guidelines. Some academic institutions may specify a particular word count or page limit for article critiques. In cases where there are no strict word count restrictions, it's essential to strike a balance between providing a thorough analysis and maintaining conciseness in your critique. A well-crafted article critique should be comprehensive enough to cover the key aspects of the article being analyzed while also ensuring that the analysis remains focused and coherent within the given word limit.
In a nutshell, article critique is an essential skill that helps us grow as critical thinkers and active participants in academia. Embrace the opportunity to analyze and offer constructive feedback, contributing to a brighter future of knowledge and understanding. Remember, each critique is a chance to engage with new ideas and expand our horizons. So, keep honing your critique skills and enjoy the journey of discovery in the world of academic exploration!
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How To Write an Article Critique: 4 Steps To Follow
If you need to know how to write an article critique, keep reading for our step-by-step guide.
In an article critique, you will be asked to critically read a research article, reflect on the article, and identify the strong and weak points of that piece. Whether you have been asked to critique a research paper, an essay, or an entire book, it would be best if you reflected on the argument’s effectiveness and validity. The key point to writing a solid article critique is to think critically.
Every author or researcher tries to convince you of the correctness of their point of view. However, even if that point of view is flawed, the author is trying to make it look good. Therefore, your job is to critique the paper critically, identifying its strong and weak points. There are several steps involved in the process.
Step 1: read the piece, step 2: gather evidence to support your article critique, step 3: format your paper, step 4. proofread your article critique, frequently asked questions.
To write an article critique, there are several materials you need to have. They include:
- The paper, book, or article you are going to be critiquing
- A computer or a notepad you can use to take notes
- Writing materials, such as pens and pencils
- Highlighters and tabs you can use to keep the information organized
If you want to write a decisive critique, you need to read the piece first. On the other hand, you don’t want to try to read a summary and grasp everything from the article. Otherwise, you risk losing a significant amount of context from the article.
As you read the article or book, there are several questions you need to answer. They include:
- If the author is considered an expert or authority in the field, why is that the case?
- What is the thesis statement or hypothesis the author is presenting? Does the author have enough evidence to support their point of view?
- Who is the target audience of the article? For example, is the target audience people with a specific viewpoint, people of a particular background, or people with a predetermined point of view?
- Are the arguments presented in the article valid? Does it seem like the sources have been cherry-picked? Or does the author appear to consider all possible answers to the question?
- Does the author appear to have any flaws in the argument? Is the author overlooking something important?
- Does the author appear to reach a logical conclusion based on the evidence in the paper?
As you read through the article, you should take notes and answer the questions above. This will give you plenty of information you can use to craft your article critique.
You need to note the author’s sources as you read the paper. These could include footnotes, endnotes, quotes, and other sources referenced in the paper. You may want to review the sources to ensure the author has drawn an appropriate conclusion based on the information in the source. You may also want to do your research to identify other sources that either support the author’s point of view or refute it.
You should also go to the article to see if there are any biased opinions. It is not unusual for someone to pick a side and not even consider the opposing point of view. If you believe you can draw a different logical conclusion based on the same evidence, you should include that in your article critique.
Remember that the language of the article will also play a vital role. You should pay close attention to word choice, particularly if the language is politically charged. Readers can interpret words differently, and you will need to explain the interpretation of the language in the article.
You may also want to identify any logical fallacies in the article. Some of the most common fallacies people use in their writing include:
- Ad Hominem: This fallacy occurs when someone attacks the individual instead of the substance of their point of view. Discrediting the person does not necessarily discredit the argument.
- Correlation and Causation: Correlation does not always equal causation. Just because something came first doesn’t mean it caused the second action.
- Slippery Slope: Many people will make the “slippery slope” argument. Just because one action takes place doesn’t mean it will end up in the worst-case scenario.
If you notice these logical fallacies, you should use them in your article critique. You might also be interested in learning how to write a case study .
You may be asked to follow APA format in your article critique. In general, there will be four separate parts to your article. They include:
- The Introduction: In the introduction, you need to include the author’s name and the title of the piece you are critiquing. You should also mention the core idea or point of view that the author has. It would be best if you also had a clear thesis reflecting your article critique’s direction.
- The Summary: In the summary, you need to include the main points of the article. If there are central arguments in the article, you should present them. Then, be sure to include the article’s main conclusion as well.
- The Critique: In your critique, you need to include both the strong and weak points of the article. Mention what the article does well, and mention what the article does poorly. You should discuss the evidence in the article and any other evidence you might have gathered.
- The Conclusion: Again, you should summarize the article’s key points. Conclude the validity of the piece you have analyzed. You may want to include some future directions that merit further research.
Once you have finished your article critique, be sure to proofread it before you submit it.
Once you have finished your article critique, be sure to proofread it before you submit it. Check for spelling, grammar, and syntax errors when proofreading your article.
What is the format of an article critique?
In academic writing, the format of an article critique includes an introduction, a brief summary, the critique itself, and the conclusion. In your critique, you should include everything from the title of the article and the author’s ideas to the research methods and research questions (or journalistic questions), depending on whether you are critiquing a research paper or a journal article.
What is the difference between a critique and a review?
Generally, a good critique is written by someone considered an expert in that field. In contrast, a review is written by someone interested in that field but is not necessarily considered an expert.
What are the components of a critique?
The components of a critique paper include the background information and author’s main point (in the introduction), a summary in the body paragraphs, a critical evaluation in the critique section, and future research or following questions in conclusion.
If you are interested in learning more, check out our essay writing tips !
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IOE Writing Centre
- Writing a Critical Review
Writing a Critique
A critique (or critical review) is not to be mistaken for a literature review. A 'critical review', or 'critique', is a complete type of text (or genre), discussing one particular article or book in detail. In some instances, you may be asked to write a critique of two or three articles (e.g. a comparative critical review). In contrast, a 'literature review', which also needs to be 'critical', is a part of a larger type of text, such as a chapter of your dissertation.
Most importantly: Read your article / book as many times as possible, as this will make the critical review much easier.
1. Read and take notes 2. Organising your writing 3. Summary 4. Evaluation 5. Linguistic features of a critical review 6. Summary language 7. Evaluation language 8. Conclusion language 9. Example extracts from a critical review 10. Further resources
Read and Take Notes
To improve your reading confidence and efficiency, visit our pages on reading.
Further reading: Read Confidently
After you are familiar with the text, make notes on some of the following questions. Choose the questions which seem suitable:
- What kind of article is it (for example does it present data or does it present purely theoretical arguments)?
- What is the main area under discussion?
- What are the main findings?
- What are the stated limitations?
- Where does the author's data and evidence come from? Are they appropriate / sufficient?
- What are the main issues raised by the author?
- What questions are raised?
- How well are these questions addressed?
- What are the major points/interpretations made by the author in terms of the issues raised?
- Is the text balanced? Is it fair / biased?
- Does the author contradict herself?
- How does all this relate to other literature on this topic?
- How does all this relate to your own experience, ideas and views?
- What else has this author written? Do these build / complement this text?
- (Optional) Has anyone else reviewed this article? What did they say? Do I agree with them?
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Organising your writing
You first need to summarise the text that you have read. One reason to summarise the text is that the reader may not have read the text. In your summary, you will
- focus on points within the article that you think are interesting
- summarise the author(s) main ideas or argument
- explain how these ideas / argument have been constructed. (For example, is the author basing her arguments on data that they have collected? Are the main ideas / argument purely theoretical?)
In your summary you might answer the following questions: Why is this topic important? Where can this text be located? For example, does it address policy studies? What other prominent authors also write about this?
Evaluation is the most important part in a critical review.
Use the literature to support your views. You may also use your knowledge of conducting research, and your own experience. Evaluation can be explicit or implicit.
Explicit evaluation involves stating directly (explicitly) how you intend to evaluate the text. e.g. "I will review this article by focusing on the following questions. First, I will examine the extent to which the authors contribute to current thought on Second Language Acquisition (SLA) pedagogy. After that, I will analyse whether the authors' propositions are feasible within overseas SLA classrooms."
Implicit evaluation is less direct. The following section on Linguistic Features of Writing a Critical Review contains language that evaluates the text. A difficult part of evaluation of a published text (and a professional author) is how to do this as a student. There is nothing wrong with making your position as a student explicit and incorporating it into your evaluation. Examples of how you might do this can be found in the section on Linguistic Features of Writing a Critical Review. You need to remember to locate and analyse the author's argument when you are writing your critical review. For example, you need to locate the authors' view of classroom pedagogy as presented in the book / article and not present a critique of views of classroom pedagogy in general.
Linguistic features of a critical review
The following examples come from published critical reviews. Some of them have been adapted for student use.
- This article / book is divided into two / three parts. First...
- While the title might suggest...
- The tone appears to be...
- Title is the first / second volume in the series Title, edited by...The books / articles in this series address...
- The second / third claim is based on...
- The author challenges the notion that...
- The author tries to find a more middle ground / make more modest claims...
- The article / book begins with a short historical overview of...
- Numerous authors have recently suggested that...(see Author, Year; Author, Year). Author would also be once such author. With his / her argument that...
- To refer to title as a...is not to say that it is...
- This book / article is aimed at... This intended readership...
- The author's book / article examines the...To do this, the author first...
- The author develops / suggests a theoretical / pedagogical model to…
- This book / article positions itself firmly within the field of...
- The author in a series of subtle arguments, indicates that he / she...
- The argument is therefore...
- The author asks "..."
- With a purely critical / postmodern take on...
- Topic, as the author points out, can be viewed as...
- In this recent contribution to the field of...this British author...
- As a leading author in the field of...
- This book / article nicely contributes to the field of...and complements other work by this author...
- The second / third part of...provides / questions / asks the reader...
- Title is intended to encourage students / researchers to...
- The approach taken by the author provides the opportunity to examine...in a qualitative / quantitative research framework that nicely complements...
- The author notes / claims that state support / a focus on pedagogy / the adoption of...remains vital if...
- According to Author (Year) teaching towards examinations is not as effective as it is in other areas of the curriculum. This is because, as Author (Year) claims that examinations have undue status within the curriculum.
- According to Author (Year)…is not as effective in some areas of the curriculum / syllabus as others. Therefore the author believes that this is a reason for some school's…
- This argument is not entirely convincing, as...furthermore it commodifies / rationalises the...
- Over the last five / ten years the view of...has increasingly been viewed as 'complicated' (see Author, Year; Author, Year).
- However, through trying to integrate...with...the author...
- There are difficulties with such a position.
- Inevitably, several crucial questions are left unanswered / glossed over by this insightful / timely / interesting / stimulating book / article. Why should...
- It might have been more relevant for the author to have written this book / article as...
- This article / book is not without disappointment from those who would view...as...
- This chosen framework enlightens / clouds...
- This analysis intends to be...but falls a little short as...
- The authors rightly conclude that if...
- A detailed, well-written and rigorous account of...
- As a Korean student I feel that this article / book very clearly illustrates...
- The beginning of...provides an informative overview into...
- The tables / figures do little to help / greatly help the reader...
- The reaction by scholars who take a...approach might not be so favourable (e.g. Author, Year).
- This explanation has a few weaknesses that other researchers have pointed out (see Author, Year; Author, Year). The first is...
- On the other hand, the author wisely suggests / proposes that...By combining these two dimensions...
- The author's brief introduction to...may leave the intended reader confused as it fails to properly...
- Despite my inability to...I was greatly interested in...
- Even where this reader / I disagree(s), the author's effort to...
- The author thus combines...with...to argue...which seems quite improbable for a number of reasons. First...
- Perhaps this aversion to...would explain the author's reluctance to...
- As a second language student from ...I find it slightly ironic that such an anglo-centric view is...
- The reader is rewarded with...
- Less convincing is the broad-sweeping generalisation that...
- There is no denying the author's subject knowledge nor his / her...
- The author's prose is dense and littered with unnecessary jargon...
- The author's critique of...might seem harsh but is well supported within the literature (see Author, Year; Author, Year; Author, Year). Aligning herself with the author, Author (Year) states that...
- As it stands, the central focus of Title is well / poorly supported by its empirical findings...
- Given the hesitation to generalise to...the limitation of...does not seem problematic...
- For instance, the term...is never properly defined and the reader left to guess as to whether...
- Furthermore, to label...as...inadvertently misguides...
- In addition, this research proves to be timely / especially significant to... as recent government policy / proposals has / have been enacted to...
- On this well researched / documented basis the author emphasises / proposes that...
- Nonetheless, other research / scholarship / data tend to counter / contradict this possible trend / assumption...(see Author, Year; Author, Year).
- Without entering into detail of the..., it should be stated that Title should be read by...others will see little value in...
- As experimental conditions were not used in the study the word 'significant' misleads the reader.
- The article / book becomes repetitious in its assertion that...
- The thread of the author's argument becomes lost in an overuse of empirical data...
- Almost every argument presented in the final section is largely derivative, providing little to say about...
- She / he does not seem to take into consideration; however, that there are fundamental differences in the conditions of…
- As Author (Year) points out, however, it seems to be necessary to look at…
- This suggest that having low…does not necessarily indicate that…is ineffective.
- Therefore, the suggestion made by Author (Year)…is difficult to support.
- When considering all the data presented…it is not clear that the low scores of some students, indeed, reflects…
- Overall this article / book is an analytical look at...which within the field of...is often overlooked.
- Despite its problems, Title offers valuable theoretical insights / interesting examples / a contribution to pedagogy and a starting point for students / researchers of...with an interest in...
- This detailed and rigorously argued...
- This first / second volume / book / article by...with an interest in...is highly informative...
Example extracts from a critical review
If you have been told your writing is not critical enough, it probably means that your writing treats the knowledge claims as if they are true, well supported, and applicable in the context you are writing about. This may not always be the case.
In these two examples, the extracts refer to the same section of text. In each example, the section that refers to a source has been highlighted in bold. The note below the example then explains how the writer has used the source material.
There is a strong positive effect on students, both educationally and emotionally, when the instructors try to learn to say students' names without making pronunciation errors (Kiang, 2004).
Use of source material in example a:
This is a simple paraphrase with no critical comment. It looks like the writer agrees with Kiang. (This is not a good example for critical writing, as the writer has not made any critical comment).
Kiang (2004) gives various examples to support his claim that "the positive emotional and educational impact on students is clear" (p.210) when instructors try to pronounce students' names in the correct way. He quotes one student, Nguyet, as saying that he "felt surprised and happy" (p.211) when the tutor said his name clearly . The emotional effect claimed by Kiang is illustrated in quotes such as these, although the educational impact is supported more indirectly through the chapter. Overall, he provides more examples of students being negatively affected by incorrect pronunciation, and it is difficult to find examples within the text of a positive educational impact as such.
Use of source material in example b:
The writer describes Kiang's (2004) claim and the examples which he uses to try to support it. The writer then comments that the examples do not seem balanced and may not be enough to support the claims fully. This is a better example of writing which expresses criticality.
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You may also be interested in our page on criticality, which covers criticality in general, and includes more critical reading questions.
Further reading: Read and Write Critically
We recommend that you do not search for other university guidelines on critical reviews. This is because the expectations may be different at other institutions. Ask your tutor for more guidance or examples if you have further questions.
IOE Writing Centre Online
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How to Write Critical Reviews
When you are asked to write a critical review of a book or article, you will need to identify, summarize, and evaluate the ideas and information the author has presented. In other words, you will be examining another person’s thoughts on a topic from your point of view.
Your stand must go beyond your “gut reaction” to the work and be based on your knowledge (readings, lecture, experience) of the topic as well as on factors such as criteria stated in your assignment or discussed by you and your instructor.
Make your stand clear at the beginning of your review, in your evaluations of specific parts, and in your concluding commentary.
Remember that your goal should be to make a few key points about the book or article, not to discuss everything the author writes.
Understanding the Assignment
To write a good critical review, you will have to engage in the mental processes of analyzing (taking apart) the work–deciding what its major components are and determining how these parts (i.e., paragraphs, sections, or chapters) contribute to the work as a whole.
Analyzing the work will help you focus on how and why the author makes certain points and prevent you from merely summarizing what the author says. Assuming the role of an analytical reader will also help you to determine whether or not the author fulfills the stated purpose of the book or article and enhances your understanding or knowledge of a particular topic.
Be sure to read your assignment thoroughly before you read the article or book. Your instructor may have included specific guidelines for you to follow. Keeping these guidelines in mind as you read the article or book can really help you write your paper!
Also, note where the work connects with what you’ve studied in the course. You can make the most efficient use of your reading and notetaking time if you are an active reader; that is, keep relevant questions in mind and jot down page numbers as well as your responses to ideas that appear to be significant as you read.
Please note: The length of your introduction and overview, the number of points you choose to review, and the length of your conclusion should be proportionate to the page limit stated in your assignment and should reflect the complexity of the material being reviewed as well as the expectations of your reader.
Write the introduction
Below are a few guidelines to help you write the introduction to your critical review.
Introduce your review appropriately
Begin your review with an introduction appropriate to your assignment.
If your assignment asks you to review only one book and not to use outside sources, your introduction will focus on identifying the author, the title, the main topic or issue presented in the book, and the author’s purpose in writing the book.
If your assignment asks you to review the book as it relates to issues or themes discussed in the course, or to review two or more books on the same topic, your introduction must also encompass those expectations.
For example, before you can review two books on a topic, you must explain to your reader in your introduction how they are related to one another.
Within this shared context (or under this “umbrella”) you can then review comparable aspects of both books, pointing out where the authors agree and differ.
In other words, the more complicated your assignment is, the more your introduction must accomplish.
Finally, the introduction to a book review is always the place for you to establish your position as the reviewer (your thesis about the author’s thesis).
As you write, consider the following questions:
- Is the book a memoir, a treatise, a collection of facts, an extended argument, etc.? Is the article a documentary, a write-up of primary research, a position paper, etc.?
- Who is the author? What does the preface or foreword tell you about the author’s purpose, background, and credentials? What is the author’s approach to the topic (as a journalist? a historian? a researcher?)?
- What is the main topic or problem addressed? How does the work relate to a discipline, to a profession, to a particular audience, or to other works on the topic?
- What is your critical evaluation of the work (your thesis)? Why have you taken that position? What criteria are you basing your position on?
Provide an overview
In your introduction, you will also want to provide an overview. An overview supplies your reader with certain general information not appropriate for including in the introduction but necessary to understanding the body of the review.
Generally, an overview describes your book’s division into chapters, sections, or points of discussion. An overview may also include background information about the topic, about your stand, or about the criteria you will use for evaluation.
The overview and the introduction work together to provide a comprehensive beginning for (a “springboard” into) your review.
- What are the author’s basic premises? What issues are raised, or what themes emerge? What situation (i.e., racism on college campuses) provides a basis for the author’s assertions?
- How informed is my reader? What background information is relevant to the entire book and should be placed here rather than in a body paragraph?
Write the body
The body is the center of your paper, where you draw out your main arguments. Below are some guidelines to help you write it.
Organize using a logical plan
Organize the body of your review according to a logical plan. Here are two options:
- First, summarize, in a series of paragraphs, those major points from the book that you plan to discuss; incorporating each major point into a topic sentence for a paragraph is an effective organizational strategy. Second, discuss and evaluate these points in a following group of paragraphs. (There are two dangers lurking in this pattern–you may allot too many paragraphs to summary and too few to evaluation, or you may re-summarize too many points from the book in your evaluation section.)
- Alternatively, you can summarize and evaluate the major points you have chosen from the book in a point-by-point schema. That means you will discuss and evaluate point one within the same paragraph (or in several if the point is significant and warrants extended discussion) before you summarize and evaluate point two, point three, etc., moving in a logical sequence from point to point to point. Here again, it is effective to use the topic sentence of each paragraph to identify the point from the book that you plan to summarize or evaluate.
Questions to keep in mind as you write
With either organizational pattern, consider the following questions:
- What are the author’s most important points? How do these relate to one another? (Make relationships clear by using transitions: “In contrast,” an equally strong argument,” “moreover,” “a final conclusion,” etc.).
- What types of evidence or information does the author present to support his or her points? Is this evidence convincing, controversial, factual, one-sided, etc.? (Consider the use of primary historical material, case studies, narratives, recent scientific findings, statistics.)
- Where does the author do a good job of conveying factual material as well as personal perspective? Where does the author fail to do so? If solutions to a problem are offered, are they believable, misguided, or promising?
- Which parts of the work (particular arguments, descriptions, chapters, etc.) are most effective and which parts are least effective? Why?
- Where (if at all) does the author convey personal prejudice, support illogical relationships, or present evidence out of its appropriate context?
Keep your opinions distinct and cite your sources
Remember, as you discuss the author’s major points, be sure to distinguish consistently between the author’s opinions and your own.
Keep the summary portions of your discussion concise, remembering that your task as a reviewer is to re-see the author’s work, not to re-tell it.
And, importantly, if you refer to ideas from other books and articles or from lecture and course materials, always document your sources, or else you might wander into the realm of plagiarism.
Include only that material which has relevance for your review and use direct quotations sparingly. The Writing Center has other handouts to help you paraphrase text and introduce quotations.
Write the conclusion
You will want to use the conclusion to state your overall critical evaluation.
You have already discussed the major points the author makes, examined how the author supports arguments, and evaluated the quality or effectiveness of specific aspects of the book or article.
Now you must make an evaluation of the work as a whole, determining such things as whether or not the author achieves the stated or implied purpose and if the work makes a significant contribution to an existing body of knowledge.
Consider the following questions:
- Is the work appropriately subjective or objective according to the author’s purpose?
- How well does the work maintain its stated or implied focus? Does the author present extraneous material? Does the author exclude or ignore relevant information?
- How well has the author achieved the overall purpose of the book or article? What contribution does the work make to an existing body of knowledge or to a specific group of readers? Can you justify the use of this work in a particular course?
- What is the most important final comment you wish to make about the book or article? Do you have any suggestions for the direction of future research in the area? What has reading this work done for you or demonstrated to you?
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How to Review a Journal Article
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For many kinds of assignments, like a literature review , you may be asked to offer a critique or review of a journal article. This is an opportunity for you as a scholar to offer your qualified opinion and evaluation of how another scholar has composed their article, argument, and research. That means you will be expected to go beyond a simple summary of the article and evaluate it on a deeper level. As a college student, this might sound intimidating. However, as you engage with the research process, you are becoming immersed in a particular topic, and your insights about the way that topic is presented are valuable and can contribute to the overall conversation surrounding your topic.
Some disciplines, like Criminal Justice, may only want you to summarize the article without including your opinion or evaluation. If your assignment is to summarize the article only, please see our literature review handout.
Before getting started on the critique, it is important to review the article thoroughly and critically. To do this, we recommend take notes, annotating , and reading the article several times before critiquing. As you read, be sure to note important items like the thesis, purpose, research questions, hypotheses, methods, evidence, key findings, major conclusions, tone, and publication information. Depending on your writing context, some of these items may not be applicable.
Questions to Consider
To evaluate a source, consider some of the following questions. They are broken down into different categories, but answering these questions will help you consider what areas to examine. With each category, we recommend identifying the strengths and weaknesses in each since that is a critical part of evaluation.
Evaluating Purpose and Argument
- How well is the purpose made clear in the introduction through background/context and thesis?
- How well does the abstract represent and summarize the article’s major points and argument?
- How well does the objective of the experiment or of the observation fill a need for the field?
- How well is the argument/purpose articulated and discussed throughout the body of the text?
- How well does the discussion maintain cohesion?
Evaluating the Presentation/Organization of Information
- How appropriate and clear is the title of the article?
- Where could the author have benefited from expanding, condensing, or omitting ideas?
- How clear are the author’s statements? Challenge ambiguous statements.
- What underlying assumptions does the author have, and how does this affect the credibility or clarity of their article?
- How objective is the author in his or her discussion of the topic?
- How well does the organization fit the article’s purpose and articulate key goals?
- How appropriate are the study design and methods for the purposes of the study?
- How detailed are the methods being described? Is the author leaving out important steps or considerations?
- Have the procedures been presented in enough detail to enable the reader to duplicate them?
- Scan and spot-check calculations. Are the statistical methods appropriate?
- Do you find any content repeated or duplicated?
- How many errors of fact and interpretation does the author include? (You can check on this by looking up the references the author cites).
- What pertinent literature has the author cited, and have they used this literature appropriately?
Following, we have an example of a summary and an evaluation of a research article. Note that in most literature review contexts, the summary and evaluation would be much shorter. This extended example shows the different ways a student can critique and write about an article.
Chik, A. (2012). Digital gameplay for autonomous foreign language learning: Gamers’ and language teachers’ perspectives. In H. Reinders (ed.), Digital games in language learning and teaching (pp. 95-114). Eastbourne, UK: Palgrave Macmillan.
Be sure to include the full citation either in a reference page or near your evaluation if writing an annotated bibliography .
In Chik’s article “Digital Gameplay for Autonomous Foreign Language Learning: Gamers’ and Teachers’ Perspectives”, she explores the ways in which “digital gamers manage gaming and gaming-related activities to assume autonomy in their foreign language learning,” (96) which is presented in contrast to how teachers view the “pedagogical potential” of gaming. The research was described as an “umbrella project” consisting of two parts. The first part examined 34 language teachers’ perspectives who had limited experience with gaming (only five stated they played games regularly) (99). Their data was recorded through a survey, class discussion, and a seven-day gaming trial done by six teachers who recorded their reflections through personal blog posts. The second part explored undergraduate gaming habits of ten Hong Kong students who were regular gamers. Their habits were recorded through language learning histories, videotaped gaming sessions, blog entries of gaming practices, group discussion sessions, stimulated recall sessions on gaming videos, interviews with other gamers, and posts from online discussion forums. The research shows that while students recognize the educational potential of games and have seen benefits of it in their lives, the instructors overall do not see the positive impacts of gaming on foreign language learning.
The summary includes the article’s purpose, methods, results, discussion, and citations when necessary.
This article did a good job representing the undergraduate gamers’ voices through extended quotes and stories. Particularly for the data collection of the undergraduate gamers, there were many opportunities for an in-depth examination of their gaming practices and histories. However, the representation of the teachers in this study was very uneven when compared to the students. Not only were teachers labeled as numbers while the students picked out their own pseudonyms, but also when viewing the data collection, the undergraduate students were more closely examined in comparison to the teachers in the study. While the students have fifteen extended quotes describing their experiences in their research section, the teachers only have two of these instances in their section, which shows just how imbalanced the study is when presenting instructor voices.
Some research methods, like the recorded gaming sessions, were only used with students whereas teachers were only asked to blog about their gaming experiences. This creates a richer narrative for the students while also failing to give instructors the chance to have more nuanced perspectives. This lack of nuance also stems from the emphasis of the non-gamer teachers over the gamer teachers. The non-gamer teachers’ perspectives provide a stark contrast to the undergraduate gamer experiences and fits neatly with the narrative of teachers not valuing gaming as an educational tool. However, the study mentioned five teachers that were regular gamers whose perspectives are left to a short section at the end of the presentation of the teachers’ results. This was an opportunity to give the teacher group a more complex story, and the opportunity was entirely missed.
Additionally, the context of this study was not entirely clear. The instructors were recruited through a master’s level course, but the content of the course and the institution’s background is not discussed. Understanding this context helps us understand the course’s purpose(s) and how those purposes may have influenced the ways in which these teachers interpreted and saw games. It was also unclear how Chik was connected to this masters’ class and to the students. Why these particular teachers and students were recruited was not explicitly defined and also has the potential to skew results in a particular direction.
Overall, I was inclined to agree with the idea that students can benefit from language acquisition through gaming while instructors may not see the instructional value, but I believe the way the research was conducted and portrayed in this article made it very difficult to support Chik’s specific findings.
Some professors like you to begin an evaluation with something positive but isn’t always necessary.
The evaluation is clearly organized and uses transitional phrases when moving to a new topic.
This evaluation includes a summative statement that gives the overall impression of the article at the end, but this can also be placed at the beginning of the evaluation.
This evaluation mainly discusses the representation of data and methods. However, other areas, like organization, are open to critique.
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How to Write a Critique in Five Paragraphs
Last Updated: March 6, 2023 References Approved
This article was co-authored by Diane Stubbs . Diane Stubbs is a Secondary English Teacher with over 22 years of experience teaching all high school grade levels and AP courses. She specializes in secondary education, classroom management, and educational technology. Diane earned a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Delaware and a Master of Education from Wesley College. wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article has 28 testimonials from our readers, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 962,066 times.
A critique is usually written in response to a creative work, such as a novel, a film, poetry, or a painting. However, critiques are also sometimes assigned for research articles and media items, such as news articles or features. A critique is slightly different than a traditional 5-paragraph theme, as it is usually focused on the overall effectiveness and usefulness of the work it is critiquing, rather than making a strictly analytical argument about it. Organizing your critique into 5 paragraphs can help you structure your thoughts.
Laying the Groundwork
- Does the creator clearly state her/his main point or goal? If not, why do you think that is?
- Who do you think is the creator’s intended audience? This can be crucial to determining the success of a work; for example, a movie intended for young children might work well for its intended audience but not for adult viewers.
- What reactions do you have when reading or viewing this work? Does it provoke emotional responses? Do you feel confused?
- What questions does the work make you think of? Does it suggest other avenues of exploration or observation to you?
- For example, if you're critiquing a research article about a new treatment for the flu, a little research about other flu treatments currently available could be helpful to you when situating the work in context.
- As another example, if you're writing about a movie, you might want to briefly discuss the director's other films, or other important movies in this particular genre (indie, action, drama, etc.).
- Your school or university library is usually a good place to start when conducting research, as their databases provide verified, expert sources. Google Scholar can also be a good source for research.
Writing the Introductory Paragraph
- For a work of fiction or a published work of journalism or research, this information is usually available in the publication itself, such as on the copyright page for a novel.
- For a film, you may wish to refer to a source such as IMDb to get the information you need. If you're critiquing a famous artwork, an encyclopedia of art would be a good place to find information on the creator, the title, and important dates (date of creation, date of exhibition, etc.).
- For example, if you’re assessing a research article in the sciences, a quick overview of its place in the academic discussion could be useful (e.g., “Professor X’s work on fruit flies is part of a long research tradition on Blah Blah Blah.”)
- If you are evaluating a painting, giving some brief information on where it was first displayed, for whom it was painted, etc., would be useful.
- If you are assessing a novel, it could be good to talk about what genre or literary tradition the novel is written within (e.g., fantasy, High Modernism, romance). You may also want to include details about the author’s biography that seem particularly relevant to your critique.
- For a media item, such as a news article, consider the social and/or political context of the media outlet the item came from (e.g., Fox News, BBC, etc.) and of the issue it is dealing with (e.g., immigration, education, entertainment).
- The authors of research articles will often state very clearly in the abstract and in the introduction to their work what they are investigating, often with sentences that say something like this: "In this article we provide a new framework for analyzing X and argue that it is superior to previous methods because of reason A and reason B."
- For creative works, you may not have an explicit statement from the author or creator about their purpose, but you can often infer one from the context the work occupies. For example, if you were examining the movie The Shining, you might argue that the filmmaker Stanley Kubrick's goal is to call attention to the poor treatment of Native Americans because of the strong Native American themes present in the movie. You could then present the reasons why you think that in the rest of the essay.
- For example, if you were writing about The Shining, you could summarize the main points this way: "Stanley Kubrick uses strong symbolism, such as the placement of the movie's hotel on an Indian burial ground, the naming of the hotel "Overlook," and the constant presence of Native American artwork and representation, to call viewers' attention to America's treatment of Native Americans in history."
- For a research article, you will probably want to focus your thesis on whether the research and discussion supported the authors' claims. You may also wish to critique the research methodology, if there are obvious flaws present.
- For creative works, consider what you believe the author or creator's goal was in making the work, and then present your assessment of whether or not they achieved that goal.
Writing the 3 Body Paragraphs
- If you have three clear points about your work, you can organize each paragraph by point. For example, if you are analyzing a painting, you might critique the painter’s use of color, light, and composition, devoting a paragraph to each topic.
- If you have more than three points about your work, you can organize each paragraph thematically. For example, if you are critiquing a movie and want to talk about its treatment of women, its screenwriting, its pacing, its use of color and framing, and its acting, you might think about the broader categories that these points fall into, such as “production” (pacing, color and framing, screenwriting), “social commentary” (treatment of women), and “performance” (acting).
- Alternatively, you could organize your critique by “strengths” and “weaknesses.” The aim of a critique is not merely to criticize, but to point out what the creator or author has done well and what s/he has not.
- For example, if you are critiquing a song, you could consider how the beat or tone of the music supports or detracts from the lyrics.
- For a research article or a media item, you may want to consider questions such as how the data was gathered in an experiment, or what method a journalist used to discover information.
- Does the author use primary sources (e.g., historical documents, interviews, etc.)? Secondary sources? Quantitative data? Qualitative data? Are these sources appropriate for the argument?
- Has evidence been presented fairly, without distortion or selectivity?
- Does the argument proceed logically from the evidence used?
- If the work is a creative work, consider whether it presents its ideas in an original or interesting way. You can also consider whether it engages with key concepts or ideas in popular culture or society.
- If the work is a research article, you can consider whether the work enhances your understanding of a particular theory or idea in its discipline. Research articles often include a section on “further research” where they discuss the contributions their research has made and what future contributions they hope to make.
Writing the Conclusion Paragraph and References
- Before you begin writing, take notes while you are watching or reading the subject of your critique. Keep to mind certain aspects such as how it made you feel. What was your first impression? With deeper examination, what is your overall opinion? How did you come to this opinion? Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
- While the 5-paragraph form can work very well to help you organize your ideas, some instructors do not allow this type of essay. Be sure that you understand the assignment. If you’re not sure whether a 5-paragraph format is acceptable to your teacher, ask! Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
- Avoid using first and second person pronouns such as, “you”, “your”, “I”, “my”, or “mine.” State your opinion objectively for a more credible approach. Thanks Helpful 39 Not Helpful 14
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- ↑ https://www.indeed.com/career-advice/career-development/how-to-write-a-critique
- ↑ https://writingcenter.uagc.edu/writing-article-critique
- ↑ http://www.citewrite.qut.edu.au/write/critique.jsp
- ↑ http://www.writing.utoronto.ca/advice/specific-types-of-writing/book-review
- ↑ https://www.hunter.cuny.edu/rwc/handouts/the-writing-process-1/invention/Writing-a-Critique
- ↑ https://writingcenter.unc.edu/esl/resources/writing-critiques/
About This Article
To write a 5-paragraph critique, provide the basic information about the work you're critiquing in the first paragraph, including the author, when it was published, and what its key themes are. Then, conclude this paragraph with a statement of your opinion of the work. Next, identify 3 central positive or negative issues in the work and write a paragraph about each one. For example, you could focus on the color, light, and composition of a painting. In the final paragraph, state your overall assessment of the work, and give reasons to back it up. For tips on how to take notes on the piece your critiquing, read on! Did this summary help you? Yes No
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To critique a piece of writing is to do the following:
- describe: give the reader a sense of the writer’s overall purpose and intent
- analyze: examine how the structure and language of the text convey its meaning
- interpret: state the significance or importance of each part of the text
- assess: make a judgment of the work’s worth or value
FORMATTING A CRITIQUE
Here are two structures for critiques, one for nonfiction and one for fiction/literature.
The Critique Format for Nonfiction
- name of author and work
- general overview of subject and summary of author's argument
- focusing (or thesis) sentence indicating how you will divide the whole work for discussion or the particular elements you will discuss
- objective description of a major point in the work
- detailed analysis of how the work conveys an idea or concept
- interpretation of the concept
- repetition of description, analysis, interpretation if more than one major concept is covered
- overall interpretation
- relationship of particular interpretations to subject as a whole
- critical assessment of the value, worth, or meaning of the work, both negative and positive
The Critique Format for Fiction/Literature
- brief summary/description of work as a whole
- focusing sentence indicating what element you plan to examine
- general indication of overall significance of work
- literal description of the first major element or portion of the work
- detailed analysis
- literal description of second major element
- interpretation (including, if necessary, the relationship to the first major point)
- overall interpretation of the elements studied
- consideration of those elements within the context of the work as a whole
- critical assessment of the value, worth, meaning, or significance of the work, both positive and negative
You may not be asked in every critique to assess a work, only to analyze and interpret it. If you are asked for a personal response, remember that your assessment should not be the expression of an unsupported personal opinion. Your interpretations and your conclusions must be based on evidence from the text and follow from the ideas you have dealt with in the paper.
Remember also that a critique may express a positive as well as a negative assessment. Don't confuse critique with criticize in the popular sense of the word, meaning “to point out faults.”
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How to Write an Article Critique
An article critique is an analysis of an article that evaluates the success of a work. Critiques give additional insight into an articles strengths and weaknesses, as well as provide an analysis of its main points. Some formatting styles, such as APA have specific guidelines on how to write a critique however, the necessary components of a critique are generally the same. To adequately critique an article you must have a thorough knowledge of what it is you are critiquing.
Read the article. Try not to make any notes when you read the article for the first time.
Read the article again, paying close attention to the main point or thesis of the article and the supporting points that the article uses.
Read the article again. To write a thorough article critique you must have thorough knowledge of the article. Reading it more than once helps to ensure that you haven't missed any important details.
Consider the credentials of the author. Does the author of the article have the necessary credentials to be considered a reliable authorial voice? It is important to consider the author's expertise and possible biases that may be tied to his perspective.
Consider the credentials of the sources used in the article. Are the sources used to support the author's claims authentic and respectable? Published works such as books, journals and other scholarly sources are a few of the adequate sources of information that an author may source.
Writing the Critique
Compose an introduction. According to the University of Waterloo's guide, "How to Write a Critique," the introduction should include the author's name, the name of the article, its source and the thesis or main point of the article.
Summarize the article's supporting points. "How to Write a Critique" suggests that you "summarize the author's purpose and main points/evidence cited that are used for back up."
Determine whether or not the supporting points provided hold up the article's main points adequately and compile your evaluation and review of the article. The University of Waterloo's guide, "How to Write a Critique," recommends that your evaluation contain the answers to the following questions: What are the author's credentials or areas of expertise? Do you agree with the author? Did the author use appropriate methods to gather the evidence? Was the evidence used by the author accurate? Are the article and the evidence still valid or are they outdated, leading to an invalid conclusion? Was the author successful in making his/her point?. The University of Waterloo's website also advises that you "divide the article into sections of thought and write a brief summary of each thought in your own words...[and] back up your decisions by stating your reasons."
Write your conclusion. According to "How to Write a Critique," your conclusion should contain a general opinion of the article, state your agreement or disagreement with the author and the reasons for your conclusion.
- Check the guidelines for the formatting style you have chosen and shape your article accordingly.
Things You'll Need
- University of Waterloo: How to Write a Critique
Born in Kingston, Jamaica, Chanelle Sicard completed her B.A. in honors English from McMaster University at the age of 20. Sicard has been writing professionally since November 2008, has a chapter published in "Universal Healthcare Problems in the United States of America," and has written for Poshglam.com, SweetSpot.ca Inc., and "Broadway Magazine."
How To Write An Article Critique in 3 Steps (With Article Critique Example)
Feb 2, 2022
Feb 2, 2022 | Blog
What Is an Article Critique?
An article critique is an objective analysis of a given article.
The article could be scientific or just a literary piece.
Whichever is the case, you need to analyze and possibly criticize the work.
However, most students summarize the key points of the article and forget they are supposed to analyze and challenge them.
Also, note that you should base your analyses on facts and rational arguments to back up with evidence – not personal opinion.
In a nutshell, a good article critique should demonstrate your understanding of an article and the topic discussed, and whether or not you think the article’s author had solid arguments.
Basically, to write a good article critique, you have to read an article, analyze it, then gather evidence.
The main purposes of writing a good article critique are to:
- Describe the main ideas and what the author wants to express
- Analyze each important and interesting point and develop an explanation of the article
- Interpret the author’s intention
- Summarise and evaluate the value of an article, stating whether you agree or disagree with the author, with supporting evidence.
What steps need to be taken to write an article critique?
1. thoroughly read the article.
Read the article to get the general message
You cannot critique an article you have not read.
The first time you read it, make sure you understand the topic and get the general message the article’s author is trying to relay.
It is more like you are searching for the thesis of the article.
You want to see if you agree with this thesis.
2. Re-read the article as you analyze it
The next time you read the article, try to make some analysis.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- What was the target audience of the article?
- What was the purpose of the article?
- What argument was the article’s author trying to prove?
- Are there holes in the key points the author used to support his arguments?
Highlight, using a pencil or marker, anything you think stands out.
Create legends for your analysis
Create legends to differentiate between main parts you found rational, inconsistent, and confusing.
For instance, you could use circles for key points or passages confusing and arrows for parts you found totally irrational.
Develop preliminary concepts for your article critique
Before you start gathering evidence, make sure you have a rough opinion of the article.
After reading the article 2 to 4 times, you should have a preliminary critique.
This preliminary critique will be the basis of your evidence gathering.
It helps to note down how you feel about the article.
Also, at this stage, try and think of sources you will use to critique the piece of research article at hand.
Think of any documentary or book you might have read that provides arguments that contradict the research article you are to critique.
2 Gather Evidence
At this point, you have already formed an opinion about the article.
Now, it is time to check if your opinion holds water by gathering evidence.
To do that:
- Ask yourself if the message of the author is rational
The easiest way to examine the rationality of the article is to analyze the intro and conclusion; are you convinced?
Then, compare the main argument of the author with other literature in the same field.
Also, check whether the article’s author conducted in-depth research before writing the article .
You can do that by checking the works quoted in the text, if any.
- Go a step further and check the practicality of the arguments in the article: Is what the author is trying to say applicable and successful in the real world?
Check for biases in the author’s arguments.
An author is likely to be biased if they have something to gain from the discussions depicted in their article.
Another obvious indicator of bias is failing to include evidence that contradicts their arguments.
Also, if the points are not properly cited, they are most likely personal opinions, thereby foundation-less.
Often, people tend to be biased due to a narrow point of view due.
As you critique an article, check for opinions that are likely to be influenced by issues such as politics, gender, race, economic status, and ethnicity.
Scrutinize stylistic elements (especially in literature critiques)
In literature, content is not the only thing you should analyze.
You should check the literary and formal techniques the author used.
The main things to pay attention to are our word choice and tone.
Stylistic elements could reveal more problems in the article’s arguments.
For instance, if an author uses a heated and enthusiastic tone, you will most likely find the author is biased and ignores contradictory evidence throughout his work.
In non-scientific and non-sociological pieces, stylistic elements are the only way to article critique.
Read also : Writing Article Reviews
3 Writing the Article Critique
At this point, you understand what the article is all about, you have formed your analyses, and you have evidence.
The next steps are to write an article critique.
Start with an engaging introduction
To write an article critique, an introduction should:
- Include the name of the author, the name of the article, the publisher, the date of publication, and the main focus of the article.
- Indicate areas where the article succeeds and areas where it fails remarkably.
Limit the introduction to a paragraph or two, at most.
Provide evidence for your analyses in the body of the critique article
In the body of your article critique, expound on your arguments; why do you disagree with the article.
- It would help if you had several arguments, where each argument falls under a separate paragraph.
Begin each paragraph with a topic sentence , followed by supporting sentences.
- The supporting sentences should have evidence from the article and external sources to back up the idea in your topic sentence.
- If you do not have one argument that disagrees with the article, then make sure each paragraph expands on your analysis but in a different direction.
Conclude by summing up your key points and explaining why your opinion is correct
In the last paragraph, recap the key points in your critique.
But, go further and explain to the reader the relevance of your article critique.
The point is not to aimlessly criticize the work of another scholar.
Demonstrate to the reader the bigger and clear picture of your review.
Show the implications of your critique in your field of study.
Also, make sure you leave a lasting impression on your reader by leaving them with a rhetorical question, a call-to-action, or a question that requires them to conduct further research.
An article critique is not a summary of a research article – it is an objective analysis that should challenge the article in question.
In this post, you will find a step-by-step process on how to write an article critique.
By the time you reach this point, writing an article critique will not seem so difficult.
How to Critique a Journal Article
So, you’ve been assigned to write a critique paper on an article for some journal? If you’re not sure where to start with this project, here is our step-by-step guide on how to critique a journal article that will help:
1. Collect basic information
The first step to writing an article critique is collecting the necessary information. This will include:
- Title page of the article reviewed .
- Statement of the main issue or problem revealed in the piece.
- Title page of the article journal where it is published, along with the date and month of publication, volume number, and pages where the article can be found.
- Purpose, research methods, approach, hypothesis , and key findings.
2. Read the article once and re-read after
The first thing to do is get an overview of the article and grasp its general idea. To shape qualified criticism, you have reread it critically, highlighting what can be useful for writing your paper. A good critique must reflect your qualified and educated opinion of the article.
3. Write your critique based on the evidence you have collected
What are the key questions to ask when critiquing a journal article? Here I will share with you some of the most important questions that should be addressed:
- Are the approaches and research methods used suitable?
- Is there any duplicated or repeated content?
- Is the discussion relevant and valuable?
- Do you believe some sections of the piece have to be expanded, condensed, or omitted?
- Did you find any ideas that were overemphasized or underemphasized in the article?
- What are the author’s core assumptions?
- Has the author of the article been objective in their statements?
- Is the purpose stated in the introduction made clear?
- Are there any errors in the author’s interpretations and facts
- Has the author cited valid and trusted sources?
- Are the statistical methods appropriate?
- Is the title of the article clear and appropriate?
- Are all statements the author makes clear?
- Is the article’s abstract presented in the correct form, relevant to the article’s content, and specific?
Article critique example
Now that you know how to critique an article, we are going to share an example journal article critique. Journal articles can be complicated for some people with no prior experience in academia; take it from someone who knows firsthand!
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you write a critique.
A critique is an objective analysis of a given article. The article could be scientific or just a literary piece.
Whichever is the case, you need to analyze and have an objective analysis of any piece of work.
However, most students summarize the main points of the article and forget they are supposed to analyze and challenge them.
In a nutshell, a good article critique should demonstrate your understanding of an article and the topic discussed, and whether or not you think the author of an article had solid arguments.
How do you write a literary critique?
- Start with an engaging introduction. Indicate areas where the article succeeds and areas where it fails remarkably.
- Provide evidence for your analyses in the body of the critique. In the body of your critique, expound on your arguments; why do you disagree with the article.
- Begin each paragraph with a topic sentence, followed by supporting sentences.
- Conclude by summing up your main points of the article and explaining why your opinion is correct
What makes a good critique?
A critique is not a brief summary of the analyzed paper – it is an objective analysis that should challenge the article in question.
- Compare the main argument of the author with other literature in the same field.
- Also, check whether the author conducted in-depth research before writing the article. You can do that by checking the works quoted in the text if any.
- Check for biases in the author’s arguments. Check for opinions that are likely to be influenced by politics, gender, race, economic status, and ethnicity.
- Scrutinize stylistic elements (especially in literature critiques).
How do you critique an article in APA?
- Introduction – it is 150-250 words long and contains some core ideas of the major work.
- Body Paragraphs – In your critique, expound on your arguments; why do you disagree with the article.
- Begin each paragraph with a topic sentence, followed by supporting sentences
- Conclusion – Conclude by summing up your main points of the article and explaining why your opinion is correct
- In the last paragraph, recap the main points of view in your critique. But, go further and explain to the reader the relevance of your critique.
- Reference Page – This is the last element of your paper and includes the sources and works cited in the text. Each reference should be arranged by APA requirements and alphabetically in ascending order.
- In-text citation – You need to cite your sources in APA formatting style. You need to place the author’s name and publication date in brackets, e.g. (Smith, 2019)
With a passion for helping students navigate their educational journey, I strive to create informative and relatable blog content. Whether it’s tackling exam stress, offering career guidance, or sharing effective study techniques
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- July 12, 2022
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How to write an article critique? What is? An article critique is a detailed analysis and evaluation of an article or research paper. The main purpose of writing an article critique is to provide the readers with a better understanding of the article, as well as its implications.
When writing an article critique, it is important to keep in mind that the goal is not simply to criticize the work but to provide a well-reasoned and well-supported analysis of the article.
There are a few things to keep in mind when writing an article critique:
- Read the article carefully and make sure you understand it.
- Identify the main thesis or argument of the article.
- Evaluate the evidence and arguments presented in the article.
- Critique the article’s strengths and weaknesses.
- Develop your argument or interpretation of the article.
- Support your argument or interpretation with evidence from the article.
- Conclude your critique by summarizing your main points and providing your assessment of the article.
Article Critique Format
When writing an article critique, there is a specific format that should be followed. The format includes the following sections:
- Summary of the article
- Evaluation of the article
The introduction should provide a brief overview of the article and its main points. It should also include a statement of your evaluation or interpretation of the article.
Summary of the Article
The summary should give a brief overview of the content of the article. It should include a description of the article’s main points, arguments, and evidence.
Evaluation of the Article
In this section, you will evaluate the article’s strengths and weaknesses. You should also discuss how well the author supports their arguments and whether or not they have adequately addressed counterarguments.
The conclusion should briefly summarize your main points and provide your overall assessment of the article.
After the conclusion , you should include a reference list of all the sources you used in your critique.
Article Critique Example
Here is an example of an article critique:
Smith, J. (2017). How to write an article critique. Journal of Business Research, 70(2), pp. 456-462.
The above article provides a detailed and helpful guide on how to write an article critique. The author discusses the main points that should be included in an article critique, as well as the format that should be followed. The article also includes a helpful example of an article critique.
The article is well-written and provides a helpful overview of the topic . However, the author could have included more information on how to evaluate the strength of an argument and counterarguments.
Overall, the article is helpful and provides a good starting point for those who are not sure how to write an article critique.
What is an Article Critique
An article critique is a detailed analysis of an article or piece of writing. It typically includes an evaluation of the author’s argument, structure, and style, as well as a close reading of the text itself.
To write a successful article critique, you must first read the piece carefully and take thorough notes. Once you have a good understanding of the author’s argument, you can begin to assess its strengths and weaknesses.
In addition, pay close attention to the way the author has organized their thoughts and expressed their ideas . This will give you a better sense of whether or not the piece is well-written and effective. With all of this in mind, you should be able to write a thoughtful and insightful critique of any article or piece of writing.
Why Critique Articles?
As a marketer, I’m often asked to read and critique articles before they’re published. And I’ve come to realize that there are three good reasons to do this:
- It allows me to provide feedback from a reader’s perspective. I can point out areas where the article might be confusing or unclear and suggest ways to make it more readable.
- It gives me a chance to offer my insights and perspectives on the topic. In many cases, I can add value by sharing my own experiences or sharing new data or research that might be relevant.
- And perhaps most importantly, critiquing articles helps me to build relationships with the authors.
The Structure of An Article Critique
There are all sorts of ways to criticize an article. You could tear it apart for its lack of logic, or you could point out how it’s biased and factually inaccurate. Or you could simply say that it’s not very well-written.
But if you want to give a truly useful critique, you need to do more than just point out the article’s flaws. You need to provide a detailed analysis of how and why the article doesn’t work.
That might sound like a lot of work, but it doesn’t have to be. There’s a simple structure that you can use to critique any article:
- Start with a summary of the article.
- Then, identify the main argument or thesis of the piece.
- Point out any flaws in the reasoning or evidence that the author uses to support their argument.
- Explain how the article could be improved.
Writing the Introduction to your Critique
The goal of your introduction is to get the reader’s attention and give them some context for the rest of your paper. To do this, you need to hook their attention and give them a sense of what your paper will be about. There are a few different ways to do this, but one common approach is to start with a broad statement and then narrow in on your specific topic.
For example, you might start with a general statement about the importance of critiquing art, and then narrow in on your specific purpose for writing about the painting you’re critiquing. Another approach is to start with a strong quotation from the piece you’re critiquing.
This can be an effective way to pique the reader’s interest and set the stage for your paper. Whichever approach you choose, make sure that your introduction is engaging and provides some context for the rest of your paper.
Writing the Body of your Critique
The body of your critique is where you get to dive in and show off your analytical skills. This is the section where you’ll be making the strongest arguments, so it’s important to take your time and get it right. Begin by carefully reading the work you’re critiquing, and taking detailed notes.
As you read, consider the following questions: What is the author’s main point? What evidence does the author use to support their argument? How effective is that evidence? Are there any holes in the argument? Once you’ve finished reading, take some time to brainstorm your thoughts on the piece. What did you like about it?
What didn’t you like? How could it be improved? Once you have a good sense of your views, you can start writing your critique. Remember to focus on giving constructive feedback that will help the author improve their work . And with that, you’re ready to start writing!
Summarizing and Concluding your Critique
The downside of the internet is that it’s full of people who are paid to have opinions. This, in turn, means that we’re often asked to wade through a lot of noise to find the signal. When it comes to critiquing someone’s work, it’s important to be clear, concise, and helpful. Here are a few tips :
- Start by summarizing what you liked about the work. This will help the author know that you were paying attention, and it will also give them a good starting point for revision.
- Point out any areas where you think the work could be improved. Be specific, and offer suggestions for how the author could make the changes you suggest.
- Conclude with a positive statement about the work as a whole. This will help the author feel good about their work, even if it still needs some revision.
A critique is a detailed analysis and assessment of something, typically art, literature, or music. A good critique should be both objective and subjective , offering both a positive and negative evaluation of the work in question.
However, all too often, people focus only on the negatives, offering little in the way of constructive feedback. This is a shame, as a well-rounded critique can be an invaluable tool for helping an artist improve their work.
When critiquing someone’s work, it is important to start by highlighting the positives. Not only will this help to build rapport with the artist, but it will also ensure that your criticisms are taken seriously. After all, if you only focus on the negatives, the artist may feel that you are not appreciating their work.
Once you have identified the positives, you can then move on to identifying areas for improvement. Again, it is important to be both objective and subjective here, offering specific examples of where you believe the work could be improved.
And always end on a positive note, offering suggestions for how the artist could make further improvements in the future. By taking this approach, you can ensure that your critiques are both helpful and encouraging.
Checklist for Writing a Critique
The checklist for writing a critique is pretty simple: say what you liked, what you didn’t like, and why. It’s hard to do all three in a short blog post or even in a long one, so if you’re ever stuck, just pick one.
- The best critiques are specific. “I loved the way the author used short sentences to create a sense of urgency” is more helpful than “I loved it.”
- The best critiques also include at least a little bit of an explanation of why you did or didn’t like something. “The author’s choice of words made me feel uncomfortable” is more helpful than “I didn’t like it.”
- And the best critiques come from a place of generosity. If you can’t find anything nice to say, maybe this isn’t the right book for you. But if you can find something to praise, your readers will appreciate it.
Tips for Writing a Good Critique
When you’re critiquing someone’s work, your goal should be to help them make it better. But sometimes, it can be hard to give constructive criticism without coming across as negative or judgmental. Here are a few tips to keep in mind the next time you’re writing a critique:
- Be specific: Vague comments like “I didn’t like it” or “It needs work” aren’t helpful. Instead, try to identify specific things that you didn’t like or that you think could be improved.
- Avoid personal attacks: It’s important to critique the work, not the person. Stick to the facts and resist the temptation to get personal.
- Be respectful: Even if you disagree with the author’s point of view, you can still respectfully express your opinion.
- Offer suggestions: If you have ideas for how the author could improve their work, be sure to share them! Just be sure to phrase them as suggestions, not demands.
- Critique the work, not the idea: It’s possible to disagree with an idea while still thinking that it’s well-expressed in a particular piece of writing . When critiquing a work, focus on the execution, not the idea.
Now that you know how to write a critique, put your skills to the test with one of these sample critiques:
Sample Critique 1
I loved the way the author used short sentences to create a sense of urgency. I also thought the choice of words was effective in conveying the characters’ emotions. However, I didn’t like how the story jumped around chronologically. I think it would have been more effective if it had been told linearly.
Sample Critique 2
The author’s choice of words made me feel uncomfortable. I felt like they were trying too hard to be poetic and it came across as forced. Additionally, I didn’t like how the author jumped around chronologically. I think it would have been more effective if it had been told linearly.
Sample Critique 3
I thought the story was well-written and engaging. I especially liked the way the author used short sentences to create a sense of urgency. However, I didn’t like how the story jumped around chronologically. I think it would have been more effective if it had been told linearly.
Article Critique Examples
When you’re looking at article critique examples, it’s helpful to keep in mind the different elements that go into a strong critique:
- The first thing to look for is a clear and concise summary of the article. This should include the main points of the article, as well as the author’s thesis statement.
- Next, you’ll want to assess the argument that the author makes. Is it well-reasoned and supported by evidence? Are there any weak points in the logic?
- You’ll want to consider your reaction to the article. Do you agree with the author’s perspective? Are there any areas where you would like to see more clarification or development? By taking all of these factors into account, you can get a well-rounded sense of what makes a good article critique example.
When critiquing an article, it’s important to be specific and identify the good and bad points. It’s also important to be respectful and offer suggestions on how the author could improve their work. By following these tips, you can learn how to write a critique that is helpful for both the writer and the reader.
What is an article critique?
An article critique is a critical evaluation of an article. It includes an analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of the article and a judgment of its overall value.
How do I start writing one?
Before you begin writing your critique, it is important to read the article carefully and take note of its main arguments. Once you have a good understanding of the article’s content, you can start writing your critique.
What are some things to keep in mind while writing an article critique?
Some things to keep in mind while writing an article critique include: identifying the main arguments of the article, evaluating the strength of those arguments, and providing your judgment about the overall value of the article.
What is the difference between an article critique and a review?
An article critique is a critical evaluation of an article, while a review is simply a summary of an article. A review may provide a critical evaluation, but it is not as in-depth as an article critique.
How long should an article critique be?
An article critique can be as long or as short as you need it to be. However, it is important to make sure that you cover all of the main points of the article and provide a thorough evaluation.
What are some common mistakes made when writing an article critique?
Some common mistakes made when writing an article critique include: forgetting to proofread , not providing enough detail, and not being critical enough.
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The Constitution Prohibits Trump From Ever Being President Again
The only question is whether American citizens today can uphold that commitment.
A s students of the United States Constitution for many decades—one of us as a U.S. Court of Appeals judge, the other as a professor of constitutional law, and both as constitutional advocates, scholars, and practitioners—we long ago came to the conclusion that the Fourteenth Amendment, the amendment ratified in 1868 that represents our nation’s second founding and a new birth of freedom, contains within it a protection against the dissolution of the republic by a treasonous president.
This protection, embodied in the amendment’s often-overlooked Section 3, automatically excludes from future office and position of power in the United States government—and also from any equivalent office and position of power in the sovereign states and their subdivisions—any person who has taken an oath to support and defend our Constitution and thereafter rebels against that sacred charter, either through overt insurrection or by giving aid or comfort to the Constitution’s enemies.
The historically unprecedented federal and state indictments of former President Donald Trump have prompted many to ask whether his conviction pursuant to any or all of these indictments would be either necessary or sufficient to deny him the office of the presidency in 2024.
Quinta Jurecic: Trump discovers that some things are actually illegal
Having thought long and deeply about the text, history, and purpose of the Fourteenth Amendment’s disqualification clause for much of our professional careers, both of us concluded some years ago that, in fact, a conviction would be beside the point. The disqualification clause operates independently of any such criminal proceedings and, indeed, also independently of impeachment proceedings and of congressional legislation. The clause was designed to operate directly and immediately upon those who betray their oaths to the Constitution, whether by taking up arms to overturn our government or by waging war on our government by attempting to overturn a presidential election through a bloodless coup.
The former president’s efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election, and the resulting attack on the U.S. Capitol, place him squarely within the ambit of the disqualification clause, and he is therefore ineligible to serve as president ever again. The most pressing constitutional question facing our country at this moment, then, is whether we will abide by this clear command of the Fourteenth Amendment’s disqualification clause.
We were immensely gratified to see that a richly researched article soon to be published in an academic journal has recently come to the same conclusion that we had and is attracting well-deserved attention outside a small circle of scholars—including Jeffrey Sonnenfeld and Anjani Jain of the Yale School of Management, whose encouragement inspired us to write this piece. The evidence laid out by the legal scholars William Baude and Michael Stokes Paulsen in “The Sweep and Force of Section Three,” available as a preprint, is momentous. Sooner or later, it will influence, if not determine, the course of American constitutional history—and American history itself.
Written with precision and thoroughness, the article makes the compelling case that the relevance of Section 3 did not lapse with the passing of the generation of Confederate rebels, whose treasonous designs for the country inspired the provision; that the provision was not and could not have been repealed by the Amnesty Act of 1872 or by subsequent legislative enactments; and that Section 3 has not been relegated by any judicial precedent to a mere source of potential legislative authority, but continues to this day by its own force to automatically render ineligible for future public office all “former office holders who then participate in insurrection or rebellion,” as Baude and Paulsen put it.
Among the profound conclusions that follow are that all officials who ever swore to support the Constitution—as every officer, state or federal, in every branch of government, must—and who thereafter either “engaged in insurrection or rebellion” against the Constitution or gave “aid and comfort to the enemies” of that Constitution (and not just of the United States as a sovereign nation) are automatically disqualified from holding future office and must therefore be barred from election to any office.
Regardless of partisan leaning or training in the law, all U.S. citizens should read and consider these two simple sentences from Section 3:
No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.
The Fourteenth Amendment was promulgated and ratified in the context of postbellum America when, even after losing the Civil War, southern states were sending men to Congress who had held prominent roles in the Confederacy or otherwise supported acts of rebellion or insurrection against the United States.
The two of us have long believed, and Baude and Paulsen have now convincingly demonstrated, that notwithstanding its specific historical origin, Section 3 is no anachronism or relic from the past; rather, it applies with the same force and effect today as it did the day it was ratified—as does every other provision, clause, and word of the Constitution that has not been repealed or revised by amendment.
Baude and Paulsen also conclude that Section 3 requires no legislation, criminal conviction, or other judicial action in order to effectuate its command. That is, Section 3 is “self-executing.” (Other scholars have relied on Chief Justice Salmon P. Chase’s poorly reasoned opinion in an 1869 case called In Re Griffin to support the contrary view. Baude and Paulsen decisively dismantle Griffin as a precedent.)
They conclude further that disqualification pursuant to Section 3 is not a punishment or a deprivation of any “liberty” or “right” inasmuch as one who fails to satisfy the Constitution’s qualifications does not have a constitutional “right” or “entitlement” to serve in a public office, much less the presidency. (For that reason, they argue that the section, although it does not entirely override preexisting limits on governmental power, such as the First Amendment’s ban on abridgments of the freedom of speech, powerfully affects their application.) Finally, the authors conclude that Section 3 is “expansive and encompassing” in what it regards as “insurrection or rebellion” against the constitutional order and “aid and comfort to the enemies” of the United States.
Baude and Paulsen are two of the most prominent conservative constitutional scholars in America, and both are affiliated with the Federalist Society, making it more difficult for them to be dismissed as political partisans. Thus it is all the more significant and sobering that they do not hesitate to draw from their long study of the Fourteenth Amendment’s text and history the shattering conclusion that the attempted overturning of the 2020 presidential election and the attack on the Capitol, intended to prevent the joint session from counting the electoral votes for the presidency, together can be fairly characterized as an “insurrection” or “rebellion.” They write:
The bottom line is that Donald Trump both “engaged in” “insurrection or rebellion” and gave “aid or comfort” to others engaging in such conduct, within the original meaning of those terms as employed in Section Three of the Fourteenth Amendment. If the public record is accurate, the case is not even close. He is no longer eligible to the office of Presidency, or any other state or federal office covered by the Constitution.
A t the time of the January 6 attack, most Democrats and key Republicans described it as an insurrection for which Trump bore responsibility. We believe that any disinterested observer who witnessed that bloody assault on the temple of our democracy, and anyone who learns about the many failed schemes to bloodlessly overturn the election before that, would have to come to the same conclusion. The only intellectually honest way to disagree is not to deny that the event is what the Constitution refers to as “insurrection” or “rebellion,” but to deny that the insurrection or rebellion matters. Such is to treat the Constitution of the United States as unworthy of preservation and protection.
Baude and Paulsen embrace the “idea that men and women who swore an oath to support the Constitution as government officials, but who betrayed that oath by engaging in or abetting acts of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, should be disqualified from important positions of government power in the future (unless forgiven by supermajorities of both houses of Congress).” To them, as to us, this will forever “remain a valid, valuable,” and “vital precept” for America.
Section 3’s disqualification clause has by no means outlived its contemplated necessity, nor will it ever, as the post–Civil War Framers presciently foresaw. To the contrary, this provision of our Constitution continues to protect the republic from those bent on its dissolution. Every official who takes an oath to uphold the Constitution, as Article VI provides every public official must, is obligated to enforce this very provision.
The Baude-Paulsen article has already inspired a national debate over its correctness and implications for the former president. The former federal judge and Stanford law professor Michael McConnell cautions that “we are talking about empowering partisan politicians such as state Secretaries of State to disqualify their political opponents from the ballot … If abused, this is profoundly anti-democratic.” He also believes, as we do, that insurrection and rebellion are “demanding terms, connoting only the most serious of uprisings against the government,” and that Section 3 “should not be defined down to include mere riots or civil disturbances.” McConnell worries that broad definitions of insurrection and rebellion , with the “lack of concern about enforcement procedure … could empower partisans to seek disqualification every time a politician supports or speaks in support of the objectives of a political riot.”
We share these concerns, and we concur that the answer to them lies in the wisdom of judicial decisions as to what constitutes “insurrection,” “rebellion,” or “aid or comfort to the enemies” of the Constitution under Section 3.
As a practical matter, the processes of adversary hearing and appeal will be invoked almost immediately upon the execution and enforcement of Section 3 by a responsible election officer—or, for that matter, upon the failure to enforce Section 3 as required. When a secretary of state or other state official charged with the responsibility of approving the placement of a candidate’s name on an official ballot either disqualifies Trump from appearing on a ballot or declares him eligible, that determination will assuredly be challenged in court by someone with the standing to do so, whether another candidate or an eligible voter in the relevant jurisdiction. Given the urgent importance of the question, such a case will inevitably land before the Supreme Court, where it will in turn test the judiciary’s ability to disentangle constitutional interpretation from political temptation. (Additionally, with or without court action, the second sentence of Section 3 contains a protection against abuse of this extraordinary power by these elections officers: Congress’s ability to remove an egregious disqualification by a supermajority of each House.)
The entire process, with all its sometimes frail but thus far essentially effective constitutional guardrails, will frame the effort to determine whether the threshold of “insurrection” or “rebellion” was reached and which officials, executive or legislative, were responsible for the January 6 insurrection and the broader efforts to reverse the election’s results.
The process that will play out over the coming year could give rise to momentary social unrest and even violence. But so could the failure to engage in this constitutionally mandated process. For our part, we would pray for neither unrest nor violence from the American people during a process of faithful application and enforcement of their Constitution.
I f Donald Trump were to be reelected, how could any citizen trust that he would uphold the oath of office he would take upon his inauguration? As recently as last December, the former president posted on Truth Social his persistent view that the last presidential election was a “Massive Fraud,” one that “allows for the termination of all rules, regulations, and articles, even those found in the Constitution.”
David A. Graham: The Georgia indictment offers the whole picture
No person who sought to overthrow our Constitution and thereafter declared that it should be “terminated” and that he be immediately returned to the presidency can in good faith take the oath that Article II, Section 1 demands of any president-elect “before he enter on the Execution of his Office.”
We will not attempt to express this constitutional injunction better than did George Washington himself in his “Farewell Address ” to the nation, in 1796:
The basis of our political systems is the right of the people to make and to alter their Constitutions of Government. But the Constitution which at any time exists, till changed by an explicit and authentic act of the whole people, is sacredly obligatory upon all. The very idea of the power and the right of the people to establish Government presupposes the duty of every individual to obey the established Government. All obstructions to the execution of the Laws, all combinations and associations, under whatever plausible character, with the real design to direct, control, counteract, or awe the regular deliberation and action of the constituted authorities, are destructive of this fundamental principle, and of fatal tendency … However combinations or associations of the above description may now and then answer popular ends, they are likely, in the course of time and things, to become potent engines, by which cunning, ambitious, and unprincipled men will be enabled to subvert the power of the people, and to usurp for themselves the reins of government; destroying afterwards the very engines which have lifted them to unjust dominion.
Our first president may well have been our most prescient. His fears about “cunning, ambitious, and unprincipled men” have, over the centuries, proved all too well founded. But his even stronger hopes for the republic were not misplaced. Still today, the Constitution, through its Reconstruction Amendments, contains a safeguard that it originally lacked—a safeguard against the undermining of our constitutional democracy and the rule of law at the hands of those whose lust for power knows no bounds.
The men who framed and ratified the Fourteenth Amendment entrusted to us, “the People of the United States,” the means to vigilantly protect against those who would make a mockery of American democracy, the Constitution, the rule of law—and of America itself. It fell to the generations that followed to enforce our hallowed Constitution and ensure that our Union endures. Today, that responsibility falls to us.
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Vivek Ramaswamy is America’s demagogue-in-waiting
The Republican debate became the entrepreneur’s coming-out party, with the news media boosting him along his way
H e thinks the climate crisis is a hoax, supports Vladimir Putin’s aggression in Ukraine and would gladly pardon Donald Trump on day 1 of his would-be presidency. A wealthy biotech entrepreneur, the 38-year-old has never before run for public office.
Despite all of this (or maybe because of it), this week’s Republican debate became a national coming-out party for Vivek Ramaswamy .
Suddenly, this inexperienced and dangerous showoff is almost a household name.
Many in the Republican base ate up his showmanship and blatant fanboying of their hero, Donald Trump. In CNN’s post-debate focus group of Republican voters in Iowa, for example, Ramaswamy got the most favorable response.
Trump publicly applauded him. And many in the mainstream media declared him victorious. The Washington Post put him up high in its “winners” column, trailing only behind Donald Trump, who notably wasn’t even there. (Choosing not to enter this particular clown car showed some uncharacteristic good sense on the former president’s part.)
The New York Times analyzed the situation under a glowing headline “How Vivek Ramaswamy Broke Through: Big Swings With a Smile”, with emphasis on his style: “unchecked confidence and insults”.
For this millennial tech bro, his performance on the Fox News stage in Milwaukee couldn’t have gone much better.
As a glimpse of America’s future, it couldn’t have gone much worse.
“If you have wondered what Trumpism after Trump looks like, ask no further,” suggested the magazine writer David Freedlander on the social media site formerly known as Twitter. His prediction accompanied a debate stage photo of Ramaswamy with clenched fist.
Certainly, he has the essentials covered. No, not foreign policy chops or a background in public service, but a mocking aversion to social justice and equality.
The Florida governor, Ron DeSantis, may talk a good anti-woke game but Ramaswamy wrote the book. His Woke, Inc: Inside Corporate America’s Social Justice Scam, published in 2021, takes aim at the nation’s “new secular religions like Covid-ism, climate-ism and gender ideology”.
His night in the spotlight, and its aftermath, shows that neither Republican voters nor many in the mainstream media have learned much since Trump came down the elevator in 2015 and proceeded to wreak havoc on the country.
In case there was any doubt, now we know: they will always fall for the attention-seeking, the policy-unencumbered, the candidate quickest with a demeaning insult. That’s a “winner”, apparently.
And it’s all too familiar.
“Ramaswamy is like Trump in the larva stage, molting toward the full Maga wingspan but not quite there yet,” wrote Frank Bruni in his New York Times newsletter. “His narcissism, though, is fully evolved.”
If Ramaswamy’s real aim – other than to bask in his own glorious reflection – is to get Trump to choose him as his running mate, he made progress toward that end.
The day before surrendering to Georgia officials on Thursday, the 91-times-indicted former president found time to praise the newcomer’s onstage statements. He was particularly pleased, of course, by Ramaswamy’s labeling Trump as “the best president of the 21st century”.
Faint-praise alert: there have been only three others, and two – Barack Obama and Joe Biden – are Democrats. But no matter, since rapturous approval, especially in superlative form – “the hugest inaugural crowd”, etc – has always been the way to Trump’s heart, such as it is.
“This answer gave Vivek Ramaswamy a big WIN in the debate because of a thing called TRUTH,” Trump gushed in a social media post.
Not everyone in the media, of course, was buying it. Charlie Sykes, editor in chief of the right-leaning Bulwark, was blunt, calling Ramaswamy “facile, clownish, shallow, shameless, pandering”, but, then again, “exactly what GOP voters crave these days”.
Given that the Republican party – still firmly in the grip of a twice-impeached con man – has lost its mind, this craving makes a certain amount of sense.
But it makes the endless media normalization even more cringe-inducing. Shouldn’t mainstream journalists be able to step back a tiny bit, providing critical distance rather than the same old tricks?
How can there be “winners” in yet another milestone on the way to fascism?
Losers? That’s easier. I think we already know who they are: Americans who care about democracy.
Margaret Sullivan is a Guardian US columnist writing on media, politics and culture
- US politics
- US elections 2024
- Vivek Ramaswamy
Review: the chicks were ready to deliver a message of protest and harmony at state fair.
The Chicks are not ready to shut up and sing.
In this summer when support for Jason Aldean's canceled, controversial video for "Try That in a Small Town" helped propel the song to the top of the country and pop charts, the Chicks — country music's original victims of cancel culture — are back on tour and letting their voices be heard.
Loud, clear and harmoniously.
In their first local appearance since a 2016 Minnesota State Fair gig , the Texas-launched trio returned to the sold-out grandstand Friday night full of spunk, spirit and social commentary. It was a terrific show, one that deserves to be mentioned in the same breath as those by Taylor Swift, Pink and Beyoncé this summer.
While the Dixie Chicks (they changed their name in 2020) were ostracized for criticizing President George W. Bush at a London concert on the verge of the Iraq war in 2003, Natalie Maines, Martie Maguire and Emily Strayer won't back down from speaking their minds 20 years later.
That was apparent Friday from their limited conversation and pointed visuals. The Chicks didn't exactly jump on their soapbox often, but their messages were obvious. In introducing a cover of the Miley Cyrus/Dolly Parton tune "Rainbowland," lead singer Maines, 48, declared, "We celebrate Pride 365 days a year." The crowd cheered.
Before singing Patty Griffin's "Don't Let Me Die in Florida," Maines pointed out, "There are many reasons we're glad we're not in Florida."
One of those reasons was communicated visually during "Tights on My Boat," a tune directed toward a cheating husband. Animated visuals depicted Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on a flamingo flotation device wearing a Mickey Mouse Club hat as well as Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump riding together on a rainbow unicorn. The audience roared.
The most virulent message was transmitted via visuals before and during the Chicks' 2020 protest scorcher "March March." First, there was a countdown with names of U.S. cities with mass shootings and the numbers of victims at each. During the song, names of Black victims of police brutality including Philando Castile and Breonna Taylor flashed on the screen as Maguire's fiddle provided a haunting soundtrack. The performance ended with a photo of a protester's sign: "Keep your law off our bodies."
It was one of the most stunningly powerful musical moments ever experienced at the State Fair grandstand.
The Chicks saved some of their vitriol for exes and others who've done them wrong. "Gaslighter," the night's opener and title track of the trio's 2020 album, was a blistering diss of a lying, no-good man. The more low-key "Sleep at Night," another "Gaslighter" track, found Maines delivering the searing lyric: "My husband's girlfriend's husband just called me up. How messed up is that?"
Backed by a six-man band (that included Maines' teenage son Slade Pasdar on guitar), the Chicks offered a generous helping of "Gaslighter," their first record in 14 years and one influenced by Maines' 2019 divorce. Not all of the songs were spilling over with anger, though.
"For Her," a delicate ballad, talked about the challenge and power of sisterhood. "Julianna Calm Down" administered sisterly, been-there advice to female friends going through a breakup.
There were plenty of old favorites, too, including the frisky bluegrass-tinged "Sin Wagon," the dreamy sing-along "Cowboy Take Me Away," the graceful, harmonious "Travelin' Soldier," the spirited, liberating "Ready to Run" and vengeful, battered-woman anthem "Goodbye Earl." The Chicks even mixed in the well-received "Daddy Lessons," their 2016 collaboration with Beyoncé, who was seen in video clips playfully dancing with her fellow Texans.
As the end of their nearly two-hour performance approached, the Chicks underscored their steadfast position, offering the 2006 Grammy-winning "Not Ready To Make Nice," a rejoinder to cancel culture (co-written by Minnesotan Dan Wilson). Aldean may have reached No. 1 this summer on the charts, but the Chicks will be forever No. 1 in the hearts of the 13,589 fans at the State Fair grandstand on Friday.
Jon Bream has been a music critic at the Star Tribune since 1975, making him the longest tenured pop critic at a U.S. daily newspaper. He has attended more than 8,000 concerts and written four books (on Prince, Led Zeppelin, Neil Diamond and Bob Dylan). Thus far, he has ignored readers’ suggestions that he take a music-appreciation class.
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After Vice’s Downfall, Top Journalists Start Their Own Tech Publication
They are joining a recent boom of publications owned and operated by the reporters and editors themselves.
By Katie Robertson
After watching Vice Media descend into bankruptcy this spring, a group of journalists from its popular tech brand, Motherboard, decided that the best way to do their work in a financially sustainable way was to strike out on their own.
And so 404 Media was born. The tech publication — founded by Motherboard’s former editor in chief, Jason Koebler; two of its top editors, Emanuel Maiberg and Samantha Cole; and one of its writers, Joseph Cox — started publishing on Tuesday.
Mr. Maiberg said 404 Media would start with just the four of them and focus on topics they had extensive experience reporting on, including hacking, sex work, niche online communities and the “right to repair” movement.
“It’s very much a website by humans for humans about technology,” he said. “It’s not about the business of technology — it’s about how it impacts real people in the real world.”
The new outfit is the latest in a recent boom of publications owned and operated by the journalists themselves. As the digital media industry has grown increasingly unsteady, with tech companies eating the bulk of advertising revenue and outlets that had bet on growth through social media shutting down, a number of journalists have turned to subscription-based websites with low overhead costs.
The founders of 404 Media said they were inspired by publications like Defector , from a group of former Deadspin staff members, and Hell Gate , run by journalists fed up with New York City media organizations. Similar sites include Discourse Blog , which journalists from the G/O Media-owned politics website Splinter started in 2020 after it was shut down , and Racket , a Twin Cities outlet from former editors of City Pages, an alternative newspaper that stopped publishing during the pandemic after more than 40 years.
The small worker-owned websites stand in stark relief to the digital media companies that popped up with venture capital backing about a decade ago, many of which stumbled.
Vice, once a highflying media brand valued at $5.7 billion in 2017, became increasingly beleaguered in recent years. After Vice filed for bankruptcy in May, a consortium led by Fortress Investment Group bought it for $350 million .
“When something like this succeeds, it’s a sign that it can work in a way that doesn’t grind people down,” Ms. Cole said, referring to 404 Media. “I think that’s why there’s this enthusiasm for the kind of thing we’re doing.”
Mr. Cox said Vice’s recent woes had pushed him to leave the company, especially the disclosure in court documents that top executives were paid six-figure bonuses in the months before the bankruptcy filing. At the same time, Vice delayed paying severance to laid-off workers, stalled on reimbursing freelancers and owed millions of dollars for services.
“I wanted to work somewhere where I had more control over how a media company allocates resources,” Mr. Maiberg said.
So far, the investment is minimal, as it has been at many of the other new journalist-owned publications: just $1,000 each, to cover initial costs. Little more is needed than a web hosting company, a content management system and a way to accept payments. The founders will all work from home, eliminating the cost of renting and maintaining an office.
A subscription to the site will cost $10 a month, or $100 a year. The group plans to see how many subscribers sign up in the initial months before deciding on salaries, Mr. Koebler said. He said 404 Media would eventually start a newsletter and a podcast.
The name was chosen as a play on the 404 error code for a webpage that is no longer available. “Since we’re revealing worlds people may not even know exist, we felt it fit,” Mr. Cox said.
On Tuesday, the site published an investigation by Mr. Cox into people who pose as private investigators to get access to data from credit bureaus.
“It was important for us not to take on V.C. investment to start,” Mr. Koebler said. He added: “We really want to prove from the beginning that we’re going to do important, sustainable, impactful journalism from Day 1 that is worth paying for and worth supporting.”
Katie Robertson is a media reporter. She previously worked as an editor and reporter at Bloomberg and News Corporation Australia. Email: [email protected] More about Katie Robertson
Sea of Stars review - a traditional RPG with modern wit
A cozy voyage.
A delightful indie gem, Sea of Stars takes you on a wholesome adventure full of laughs, danger, and twists. Borrowing mechanics from a wide range of genres, Sea of Stars is more than the sum of its parts, though it is slightly hampered by its relatively dull protagonists and lack of character customization.
Combat that’s easy to learn and hard to master
Gorgeous soundtrack and visuals
Delightful writing that charms with its gentle irreverence
The two central protagonists are a little dull
No character customization
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Platform reviewed: PC Available on: Nintendo Switch , PS5 , PS4 , Xbox Series X |S, Xbox One , and PC Release date: August 29, 2023
As the heroes of Sea of Stars , Valere, and Zale, squared up to do battle against a giant worm, a tense beat began to play, before slowly opening into a dramatic score. The way the game’s first boss fight played out followed suit, in a way, with Sea of Stars ’ first giant enemy (an enormous worm) smashing the sides of the arena all while the encounter continually escalated. After a fierce back and forth with more than a few close calls, the worm perished in a dramatic and cathartic animation. The battle was won, and I felt great.
This is the magic at the heart of Sea of Stars. This indie RPG from Sabotage Studio faithfully recreates the thrill of classic turn-based battles that define the best JRPGs while elevating itself through the use of modern genre-blending design principles.
Sea of Stars is all about adventure, offering stunning pixel art visuals, diverse locales, and a simple yet engaging plot. However, Sabotage’s latest RPG is more than just an homage to the classic, early installations of Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest . With Sea of Stars, Sabotage has taken a holistic approach to design, making the game world feel broad, grounded, and cohesive.
Sea of Stars’ writing has a cheeky irreverence reminiscent of indie classic Undertale
Background NPCs have dialogue that makes sense and is consistent with the world, while even small towns have areas you can explore if you’re inclined to go searching for hidden treasure. NPCs also have custom animations to help underscore their quirks, reinforced by character ‘voices’, which are captured by contrasting text sounds for different speakers. There’s even a fishing minigame. These little details add up to give Sea of Stars a depth that exceeds the sum of its parts.
What’s more, Sea of Stars ’ writing has a modern twist, with some cheeky irreverence reminiscent of indie classic Undertale sprinkled in. Characters might make little nods to the tropes that bind the world together, or, in the case of one particular pirate, almost break the fourth wall entirely. This sense of self-awareness keeps the game fresh, offering Sea of Stars a momentum that carries it through its weaker moments.
A matter of timing
Beneath its pixelated veneer, Sea of Stars is a surprisingly innovative title, daring to conflate genres in its attempt to build something novel. Though combat is turn-based, the game rewards you for some good timing whenever your character attacks or receives damage. Time a button press right, and you’ll get an offensive or defensive bonus. This little quirk adds an element of tension and excitement to even the most routine of battles.
Character skills also follow suit, requiring you to press buttons when prompted, or hold down buttons and release them at the right moment. In isolation, they amount to very simple mini-games, but, in the context of the game’s battles, they enable you to learn and grow alongside the characters. So, as Valere levels up, so too does your ability to get the timing right on her Moonerang attack.
Our heroes descended into a valley, passing a giant dragon called ‘The Sleeper”. Seeing the dozy titan up close brought me into the world of Sea of Stars in a big way, hinting at a whole universe of myth and potential - all while proving that sprites can be just as awe-inspiring as polygons.
Combat in Sea of Stars offers a satisfying depth that is made apparent by the game’s approach to regular attacks. Hit someone with a normal attack and you’ll not only recover MP, your spellcasting resource, but you’ll also generate Live Mana, which can be used to Boost characters when they use skills and attacks in battle. Reminiscent of the excellent action economy in Octopath Traveller 2 , boosting makes your character more effective, while also imbuing their basic attacks with the character’s signature element.
This latter is vital for dealing with 'Locks', a system whereby powerful attacks from enemies can be weakened or even prevented by hitting them with the right combination of damage types in a given time window. Sea of Stars transparently counts down to every foe’s next move, allowing you to spend your turn wisely and plan accordingly. In keeping with the best traditions of the turn-based RPG, Sea of Stars ’ battles feel like dramatic, fast-paced puzzles, challenging players to find efficient solutions to increasingly complex threats.
That said, a lack of character customization is conspicuous. When characters level up, you can select which stats to increase, but the choice of skills and abilities available to each party member is determined by story beats, rather than player decisions. Though this grants each character a more distinctive set of actions that reinforces their role in the story, it does detract from player agency in a way that had me missing Bravely Default 2 ’s job system.
Will it blend?
Every other facet of Sea of Stars attempts to blur genre divides, borrowing techniques from across the rich tapestry of modern games to create something novel and refreshing.
Not only does Sea of Stars place a greater emphasis on traversal than most JRPGs, but the game’s dungeons also borrow from the likes of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom by allowing the player to acquire items that let them interact with the world in new and interesting ways. A grappling hook you find in a necromancer’s lair is a particular gem: it not only allows you to solve the dungeon’s own puzzles but also gives you a tool with which to gain the upper hand over enemies in combat.
The story, too, borrows from outside of the established JRPG toolbox. While the narrative’s bare bones follow the traditional “chosen heroes go off to defeat a great evil” mold, Sea of Stars offers twists that alter the flavor just enough to keep it interesting. Early on in the story, serious and superpowered Solstice Warriors Valere and Zale are joined by Garl, a wholesome young man who loves cooking, meeting new people, and looking out for his friends.
Having a non-magical party member early on helps place the epic struggle of the Solstice Warriors in a wider context
Seemingly transplanted from Stardew Valley or Animal Crossing: New Horizons Garl’s wholesomeness adds a much-needed counterbalance to Valere and Zale’s stoic determination. Having a non-magical party member early on helps place the epic struggle of the Solstice Warriors in a wider context by allowing us to view their quests through the eyes of an average Joe, all while humanizing the whole affair with Garl’s good-natured gentleness.
Much like Undertale , Sea of Stars isn’t afraid to draw on tropes when needed, skillfully discarding them once they lose their luster. For instance, at one point in the tale, you encounter a group of charming, fourth-wall-breaking pirates. Though initially presented as a comedic interlude, they swiftly gain depth as they’re transplanted from a wholesome trading port to a tavern on a haunted island. In this new context, their irreverent comedy takes a whole new tone, as they take to the stage to lift the locals’ spirits. What was once played for laughs is now used to make a comparatively serious point about hope in dark places. The grief-ridden patrons of the tavern are distracted from their woes, if only for a moment, by these zany pirates. Sea of Stars is full of these moments of theatrical contrast and is all the stronger for it.
This sense of theater is consistent across the entirety of Sea of Stars . Every story beat is tinged with JRPG melodrama but never feels imprisoned by it, allowing the game to occasionally blur genres and move beyond the established JRPG formula. Though the relatively flat main protagonists and lack of customization options do stifle the game’s flair, Sea of Stars remains an enchanting adventure that will please old-school RPG fans as well as those looking for a cozy adventure.
Though Sea of Stars doesn’t offer support for colorblind players or those with other visual impairments, the title does offer numerous ways of tweaking the core game experience to make its combat accessible to a range of players. Much like Final Fantasy 16 , Sea of Stars offers players Relics which allows them to customize elements of the game difficulty. Some soften or even remove quick-time elements, while others heal the party between engagements, allowing players to tailor their experience to better suit their preferences.
How we reviewed Sea of Stars
I played 10 hours of Sea of Stars making my way through a range of boss encounters, dungeons, puzzles, and a sizable chunk of the story. I played the game on PC with a Dualsense PS5 controller , which handled smoothly.
During my time with the game, I sampled the fishing mini-game as well as Wheels, an in-universe strategy game reminiscent of Gwent or Triple Triad. I also spent time experimenting with different party compositions and battle strategies.
Looking for more great games? Our list of the best PS5 games and our round-ups of the best Xbox Series X games and best Nintendo Switch games will tell you exactly which titles offer the most bang for your buck.
Cat Bussell is a Staff Writer at TechRadar Gaming. Hailing from the crooked spires of London, Cat is an experienced writer and journalist. As seen on Wargamer.com , TheGamer.com , and Superjumpmagazine.com , Cat is here to bring you coverage from all corners of the video game world. An inveterate RPG maven and strategy game enjoyer, Cat is known for her love of rich narratives; both story-driven and emergent.
Before migrating to the green pastures of games journalism, Cat worked as a political advisor and academic. She has three degrees and has studied and worked at Cambridge University, University College London, and Queen Mary University of London. She's also been an art gallery curator, an ice cream maker, and a cocktail mixologist. This crash course in NPC lifestyles uniquely qualifies her to pick apart only the juiciest video games for your reading pleasure.
Cat cut her teeth on MMOs in the heyday of World of Warcraft before giving in to her love of JRPGs and becoming embedded in Final Fantasy XIV. When she's not doing that, you might find her running a tabletop RPG or two, perhaps even voluntarily.
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