Critical Review of an Article (in the area of Organizational Behavior)
Volume of 5 pages (1375 words)
Assignment type : Essay
2. Critical Review of an Article (in the area of Organizational Behavior)
The critical review of an article is vital because without it you will not acquire an understanding of your intended area of research or field of inquiry (subject of investigation), e.g., what has already been done on it (e.g. dominants, stakeholders, and own perspectives), and how it has been researched, and what the key issues are (or controversies exist). It is therefore, a part of your academic development – of becoming an expert in the field.
The review of an article will familiarize you with library resources and scholarly business/management articles and research reports in the area of business and management sciences. The electronic database search engines have numerous scholarly articles in the discipline of business administration that can be viewed and printed in full text. To access electronic database from King Saud University’s home page, go to the library home page.
The article you select from electronic database must be of the scholarly level, addressing the issues in business and management practices in different sectors of the economy. Your review of an article should include citations and references. The objective of your review is not to restate the article. It is to analyze the author’s position in terms of credibility and factuality. In your written review or assignment you will be expected to show that you understand previous studies in the context of your intended area of research.
• Understand the main theories in business and management research or subject area.
• How these theories have developed and applied, and
• How the criticism that have been made on that area of research.
In terms of your review of an article or re-action paper whether it is empirical or non-empirical, the application of critical attitude should be demonstrated in the written assignment. Follow the following points for effective criticism identified by Hart (2009):
• Agreeing with, or defending a position, or confirming its usefulness through an evaluation of its strengths and weakness.
• Conceding or compromising that an existing approach or point of view has some merits which can be useful, but those others need to be rejected.
• Focusing on ideas, theories and arguments and not on the author of those arguments, so as to produce careful, considered and justified evaluation.
• Being aware of your own critical stance or attitude; identifying your reasons for selecting the work you have criticized and recognizing the weakness in your critique.
• Selecting elements from existing arguments and reformulating them to form a synthesis: a new point of view on some subject matter.
• Finding fault in an argument by identifying fallacies (misleading notion), inadequacies, lack of evidence or lack of plausibility.
MORE SPECIFIC GUIDELINES FOR CRITICAL REVIEW OF AN ARTICLE
The paper/article you have selected for your critical review in the area of business and management sciences should be re-examined an existing body of knowledge in the light of new developments. Either way, you have to endeavor to interpret and understand the focal point of the author(s) in the selected intellectual piece of work.
You must have to develop an argument/position of advocacy (support) that defines what is already known and must define the un-answered question which needs new primary research.
Interprets the current understanding of the selected article and analyze how the research question (s) has been answered or set objectives have been achieved.
Wallace and Wray (2009), suggest the sequence of questions for any serious reading and writing. The answer of each question provides the structure for ordering the critical thoughts in response to any critical reading and writing.
1. Why am I reading this article?
2. What is the author trying to do in writing this?
3. What is the author saying that is relevant to what I want to find out?
4. How convincing is what the author is saying?
5. In conclusion, what use can I make of this?
By answering each of the above questions will help you to order your critical thoughts, especially when you are at the early stage of learning to become a serious reader and writer. Before you start the writing of the critical review of an article always answer question – 1) [why am I reading this article? Then answer questions 2), 3), and 4) what is the author trying to do in writing this?, what is the author saying that is relevant to what I want to find out?, how convincing is what the author is saying?] during the writing process of the critical review of an article.
Once you have finished the writing of your assignment (s), answer the 5th question i.e. “in conclusion, what use can I make of this”.
STRUCTURE FOR CRITICAL REVIEW OF AN ARTICLE/BOOK CHAPTER
Generally, at an early stage of learning to become a critical reader and writer, it is important to concentrate on the viewpoints, interpretation and significance of the paper rather than finding the truth in it. As a reader we attempt to find a common ground between our own understanding and beliefs, and those of the authors. This can only be done by thinking about the extent to which the claims and supporting evidence in the selected paper for critical review is presented – which presumably satisfy the authors – also satisfy us (Wallace & Wray, 2009).
In our class each individual has a different knowledge and experience (theoretical, research, policy and practice). For a critical review of an article/paper, it is sensible approach to adopt prescribed structure suggested by Wallace & Wray, (2009). Each section of the critical review of an article should address your presentation following the suggested steps below:
Step – 1
Title – of an article/paper is your own choice (must be in the area of business administration and management) and it should include the key words that will indicate to the reader what you are doing (critical review of selected paper/article or book chapter).
Step – 2
Introducing the Critical Review of the Paper/Article or Book Chapter – Your introductory paragraph begin with an initial identification of the paper/book or chapter title, author (s) name (s), source of publication (name of journal/book, date, volume number and other important details (do not provide the authors’ biography). Also, it should contain a statement of your purpose i.e. critically review the selected paper/article or book chapter as a contribution to answer your review question for ordering critical thoughts in the previous section (why am I reading this article?). Your introductory part must be very concise and precise and create interest for the reader to go into details.
Step – 3
Introducing the Paper/ Book Chapter being Critically Reviewed – what the author(s) was/were trying to find out and what they did (begin to build the warrant of your argument).
A summary of the authors’ purposes for the paper/article and the kind of enquiry they engaged in, including an indication of the type of literature they produced (use your answer of question – 2, for ordering critical thoughts in the previous section e.g., what is the author trying to do in writing this) and their intellectual project (use your answer of question – 3, for ordering critical thoughts in the previous section e.g., what is the author saying that is relevant to what I want to find out?)
• A brief indication of why the selected paper/article is relevant to the review questions guiding your critical review (the answer of your question – 1, why am I reading this article?).
• A brief summary of how they went about their investigation (i.e., the methodology, research design, sample, methods of data collection and analysis). Here you should focus on the strengths and weakness of the paper/book or chapter. This could be followed by a brief summary of the range, contents and argument (s) of the paper/book or chapter (Wallace & Wray, 2009). Your summary may not more than two paragraphs.
Step – 4
The Authors’ Main Claim – relating to the review questions in the previous section (continuing to build the warrant of your argument).
• A summary of the main claims made by the author (s) of the selected paper/book chapter, as relevant to answering your review questions (use your answer of question – 4 how convincing is what the author is saying?) – from the previous section.
• An indication of the range of contexts to which the authors claim, explicitly or implicitly that their findings may apply (i.e., they may imply that their claims apply to all contexts or do not specify any limits on the extent to which they may be universally applicable).
Step – 5
Evaluating the Authors’ Main Claim – relating to the review questions in the previous section (continuing to build the warrant of your argument).
• You are supposed to critically evaluate the claims of the author’s and to assess that they are convincing for the context from which those claims were derived (answer to the review question – 5 “In conclusion, what use can I make of this” from the previous section and possibly referring to additional literature to support your judgment about the authors’ main claims).
• Your critical assessment of how far the claims made by the authors of the paper/book chapter may be applicable to other contexts, including your own experience, e.g., the prescriptions for practices emerging from this work are unlikely to apply directly to your context.
Step – 6
Conclusion – your brief overall evaluation of the paper/book chapter, to assess its contribution to answering your review questions in previous section.
• For this purpose – your summary answer of the first and second review questions will enable you to make a logical conclusion. This will include a statement of your judgment, with reasons, about how far the findings and any broader claims are convincing and applicable to your professional context or for the context from which they were derived.
• More simply, in this section provide a summary evaluation of the overall contribution made by the authors (s) to the subject of investigation and your own understanding of the topic and to scholarship. Make sure you substantiate what you say by drawing on the paper/ book or chapter itself as evidence and other scholarly source.
Step – 7
References – provide the full reference for the paper/article you have reviewed. If you refer to any additional literature, list the papers/articles to which you have referred.
Source for the Guidelines: Adopted from Wallace & Wray, (2009).
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