Read your assignment!
Before you start, make sure you understand what the assignment is asking for.
Highlight key parts (e.g. due date, requirements).
How to write a critical review of an article
Keywords are the main ideas or concepts of your research question. Find your keywords in the main ideas presented in the book.
Brainstorm synonyms for these main ideas.
You'll use these keywords for your searches.
1. Read the book.
You can't review something you haven't read.
This is not a book report where you simply summarize the ideas. A critical review asks you to examine the ideas of another person from your perspective.
Keep in mind that you will need to summarize and evaluate the main ideas as well as fulfill the criteria on your assignment sheet.
Take a look at the University of Wisconsin - Madison's Reading for a Book Review.
2. Evaluate the book's main points.
As you read, keep track of the book's main points and your reactions to the ideas. It might be helpful to make a table like this:
|Book's main points||My responses|
|An apple a day keeps the doctor away.||
What scientific evidence is there to support this claim?
How does the author support this claim in the book?
What are the origins of this theory? Is this the original source of this theory or has is the author building upon pre-existing ideas?
and so on...
These responses should be valid academic points - it's not enough to say that it's a "good" or "bad" idea. You need to explain why.
3. Library research
You'll need to give your review some context. Your professor may ask you to consult other works.
Use keywords in the library search to find other resources on the same topic. If you search using the title of the article, you'll only find the article and others' reviews of the article. Use Google Scholar to locate works which have cited this article.
As you read these sources, take notes in your own words to avoid unintentional plagiarism.
Not citing your sources = plagiarism
- Last Updated: Jul 12, 2018 3:27 PM
- URL: https://library.ucalgary.ca/guides/anthropology
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