Article Critique Assignment
- (link 2) how to read quantitative research
- How to Read Quantitative Research:
- A Nonexperimental Example
- Quoted from McMillian, J. and Schumacher, S. (1997). Research
in education: A conceptual introduction (4th edition), pp
48-59. NY: HarpersCollins College Publishers.
- Although there is no universally accepted
format for reporting quantitative research, most studies adhere
to the sequence of scientific inquiry. There is variation in
the terms used, but the components indicated below are included
in most studies:
- 1. Abstract
- 2. Introduction
- 3. Statement
of research problem
- 4. Review
- 5. Statement
of research hypotheses or questions
- 6. Methodology
- b. instruments
- c. procedures
- 7. Results
- 8. Discussion,
- 9. References
- In writing a research report, the writer
begins with the introduction and continues sequentially to the
conclusion. In planning to conduct research, the researchers
begin by formulating a research problem.
- Abstract: The abstract is a paragraph that summarizes the journal
article. It follows the authors' names and is usually italicized
or printed in type that is smaller than the type of the article
itself. Most abstracts contain a statement of the purpose of
the study, a brief description of the subjects and what they
did during the study, and a summary of important results. The
abstract is useful because it provides a quick overview of the
research, and after studying it, the reader usually will know
whether to read the entire article.
- Introduction [context
of & background leading to problem studied]: The introduction is usually limited to the first [one
or two] paragraph[s] of the article. The purpose of the introduction
is to put the study in context. This is often accomplished by
quoting previous research in the general topic, citing leading
researchers in the area, or developing the historical context
of the study. The introduction acts as a lead-in to a statement
of the more specific purpose of the study.
- Research Problem: The first step in planning a quantitative study is
to formulate a research problem. The research problem is a clear
and succinct statement that indicates the purpose of the study.
Researchers begin with a general idea of what they intend to
study, such as the relationship of self-concept to achievement,
and then they refine this general goal to a concise sentence
that indicates more specifically what is being investigated--for
example, what is the relationship between fourth graders' self
concept of ability in mathematics and their achievement in math
as indicated by standardized test scores?
- The statement of the research problem
can be found in one of several locations in articles. It can
be the last sentence of the introduction, or it may follow the
review of literature and come just before the methods section.
- Review of Literature:
After researchers formulate a research
problem they conduct a search for studies that are related to
the problem. The review summarizes and analyzes previous research
and shows how the present study is related to this research.
The length of the review can vary, but it should be selective
and should concentrate on the way the present study will contribute
to existing knowledge. It should be long enough to demonstrate
to the reader that the researcher has a sound understanding of
the relationship between what has been done and what will be
done. There is usually no separate heading to identify the review
of literature, but it is always located before the methods section.
- Research Hypothesis or
Question: Following the literature review
researchers state the hypothesis, hypotheses, or question(s).
Based on information from the review, researchers write a hypothesis
that indicates what they predict will happen in the study. A
hypothesis can be tested empirically, and it provides focus for
the research. For some research it is inappropriate to make a
prediction of results, and some studies a research question rather
than a hypothesis is indicated. Whether it is a question or a
hypothesis, the sentence should contain objectively defined terms
and state relationships in a clear, concise manner.
- Methodology: In the methods or methodology section, the researcher
indicates the subject, instruments, and procedures used in the
study. Ideally, this section contains enough information so that
other researchers could replicate the study. There is usually
a subheading for each part of the methods section.
- See specific standards
or criteria to evaluate quantitative research by clicking on
the links below.
- (link 3) standards of adequacy for:
- true experimental designs,
- quasi-experimental designs,
- single-subject designs
- (link 4) standards of adequacy for:
- descriptive research,
- correlational research,
- survey research, and
- ex post facto research