Writing an article review is something that students constantly have to do for their university projects, but it can be difficult to know where to start. What do you include? How much detail should you go into? Answering all of these questions and more, we've compiled a list of the best tips and advice on how to write a good article review.
Top 13 tips to writing an article review
1) Find the right article for you to write a review about
One of the most important things in writing any kind of academic work is finding the right material to base your work on. You can't claim that something proves or disproves something if it doesn't and it's your job to provide good and reliable evidence in every aspect of your work.
2) Make a note of the author and their credentials
When reviewing an article, you must at least briefly mention who wrote the article you're reviewing and any information about their background or qualifications they may have. This is likely to give you credibility in the eyes of your marker and for this reason; it is advisable to give a bit more detail, such as where they studied or what qualifications they have.
3) Make a note of the journal in which their article appeared
Just like the author's credentials, you should also mention what journal their article was published in before going into the review. This adds to their credibility and ensures that the article is legitimate and reliable.
4) An introduction
The first paragraph should set out what the main points of the article are and what you will be doing in your review. For example, "This paper looks at how important music is to teenagers today" or "In this article, author Jane Smith looks at the impact of pornography on modern society". This way, you give your reader an idea of what they're going to get out of the article and it will help them decide whether or not they want to read it.
5) What did the author achieve?
Now that we've got a rough idea of the author and their article, we need to consider what they achieved and explain it in an accessible way. Again, this is where you give your opinion and evaluation of the paper rather than just listing off everything that happened.
6) Consider any biases
Everyone has them, but when writing a review you have to counterbalance your own biases with the opinions of other people. Including expert opinions is one way to do this, but you can also get your reader on board by speaking positively about the author or their article if they are in agreement with you.
7) How did the article influence what we know about a subject?
This is another important part in your review. Have their findings added to what we currently know about a subject or are they disproving something that has been said before?
8) How accurate was the article?
This is another crucial part because it relates directly to the credibility of the author. When writing your review, you must take care not to misquote them or their work and instead quote important parts and use these within your review. Again, the credibility of the author is at stake so you should base your opinion on evidence from their article.
9) How well written was this article?
This is one of the most subjective parts in writing a good review and it's something that you must take into consideration because your reader will expect you to have something to say about the writing style. If it is good, why? If it isn't, then explain that too.
10) Your conclusion
This is where you get the chance to tie everything together and give your final opinion of the article's contents. This can be quite simple, just a couple of sentences to summarize everything that has been said.
11) Quote the authors
This is another important part in writing an academic review and something you must always include when doing a critical review of someone else's work, because it will add to your credibility. For this section, you should jot down a few key points from the author and write them as quotes.
12) Add your own thoughts
Now that you've included what they said, you can add your own thoughts and opinions about their work. It's important not to just copy their words though – instead you must place them within a relevant context and use evidence from the article itself to support anything that is said.
13) Reread what you've written
This part of the process is very important because if you don't take this step, your writing won't flow and will instead come across as jumbled and disjointed. For this reason, it is recommended that you read through everything at least twice before submitting it