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Friday Jul 20, 2018

How to Write a Good Article Review

Have you ever wondered what the purpose of an article reviews is, and why do your professors want you to pay so much attention to this assignment? What do you google first when a new movie is released? You want to know someone else's opinion about it, and you're scouring the Internet for it. You may want to read professional critics' reviews, but more often we try to read the general opinion of the audience or our friends. The same happens when you want to get more info about books, music, singers, new games, some places, services, etc.

Article review requires you to give your opinion concerning a particular printed piece, but you must do it in a more academic style and support your viewpoint with examples. But, don't get frustrated! In this article, we will explain how to write an article review so that it looks scholarly and more substantial. Let's not waste time and start learning how to review a journal article.

We organized our guide in such a way as to make it easier for the reader to find the necessary information fast. Below are the most commonly asked questions that students usually ask when working on similar assignments.

What is an article review?

An article review is a piece of academic writing that summarizes and evaluates an article.

What are the essential features of an article review?


Your audience knows the subject you are reviewing. It means you can (and should) use specific terminology, addressing particular key points of the area you are analyzing. Don't be afraid to use jargon because the readers usually know at least something about the subject. However, sometimes your professors can indicate the level of awareness of the audience you are going to target.


In a review, you are to write a summary of the main ideas, thoughts, findings, and the author's position. Your next step is to evaluate and critique the article, the author's contribution to the corresponding sphere, and the importance of their article. In other words, it has two parts, so don't start your review with critique. Before moving on to the second step, lead the readers into the subject matter of your article, giving them some background about the author.


Your critical evaluation should rest on your knowledge, the understanding of the subject, and your ability to provide reasoning. That means your critique should build on proof and logical evidence.

What about an article review format?

The format of your article review will depend on the academic style you have to use. Before assigning the task, your professor will generally provide you with the essential details about the style, pages, the overall number of articles to review, sources, and so on. We recommend you acquaint yourself thoroughly with the recommendations as soon as you get them so that you have the opportunity to ask some questions. If you read your teacher's instructions at the last moment, it will be more difficult for you to contact them and get prompt help because your teacher might be busy, so they won't be able to give you any advice.

After reading the instructions, you'll know the academic style you need to adhere to and adjust your work accordingly.

There are four common styles, and you probably know them: APA, MLA, Harvard, and Chicago. Generally, students write article reviews in APA and MLA style, but there are exceptions to this rule, so mind the peculiarities of each style! Among other things, pay attention to in-text citations, formatting of sources, and reference list.

Do I need a title page for my review?

This question is closely connected with the previous one. According to the general rules, MLA doesn't require you to have a title page. However, you should double check your instructions because sometimes professors leave a special note about it.

Requirements for an APA article review title page are no different than those for general title pages. It should be written on a separate page and include all details about the author (institutions, names, etc.).

How do you structure an article review?

The good news is that you can structure an article review by following a generalized format. It must have a title (or a title page), an abstract, an introduction, a body, and a summary (conclusion). And don't forget about the references!


The article review abstract should deal with the rationale, topicality, key findings, and general summary. It shouldn't exceed 300 words. It also makes sense to give some overall idea of the paper, introduce the readers to the topic and its importance, and give background info about the article and its author if those will help the reader to understand your review better.

How to start an article review?

The only way to start a review is to write an introduction. Sometimes, your teacher can ask you to add a page with the title of the article you are reviewing as well as referencing information. That's why make sure to double-check the instructions.

How to write an introduction to an article review?

If there are no additional requirements, an article review introduction starts with details about the article and where it was published. The next paragraph introduces the main elements and ideas. It's vital to show your ability to analyze such things. The last section may demonstrate your work as an evaluator and provide a small clue on the importance and validity of the article, as well as its role in the overall research in this particular area. It is crucial to link the content of the review article with your knowledge of the discipline it pertains.

Use this short article review introduction example as a guide and try to figure out the main ideas for your paper:

According to the general definition, discourse is a rather broad term which is related both to written and spoken communication. M. Foucault in his article "What is an Author?" uses the word "discourse" to refer to a text written by a particular writer (author) and its features. Apart from using the term to represent a concept of written text, Foucault also touches upon such topics as the mode of the discourse and its variation within each culture.

This term is important because it is widely used in different contexts outside literature. It depends on historical and social situations within each society and, therefore, influences its culture as well. The article discusses the connection between the name of the author and discourse features. Foucault is interested in the relationship between the author and the discourse features of the text. He questions whether the discourse changes if a function such as the author of the text disappears. He also looks into the mode of discourse, its purpose, and the principles of the text analysis, as well as the overall perception of the text.

How to write a good conclusion for an article review?

The last part of this guide deals with the main tips on how to end the review. It's the last part, but a lousy conclusion can spoil a decent article review. Hopefully, it won't happen to you after you read this guide.

Write your article review conclusion to show the work you've conducted. It should demonstrate your understanding of what you've done in the paper and your reasons for doing so. Give your point of view and support it with examples.

Below is a conclusion example for an article review that should help you understand the key points.

The topic of the article is relevant for people studying discourse features and history and doing this for the benefit of those interested in the history of discourse analysis. The article points out that in fiction the text isn't a discourse feature. Instead, it says the author is a peculiar feature of a discourse. Even though the text was written in the 19th century, it raises a contemporary and important issue. Nowadays, people tend to judge any text based on the name of its author. If the author is well-known and successful, the audience might react better to him rather than to a lesser known author or someone with a bad reputation. It makes people pay more attention to the author than to the written work itself. This tendency is observable not only in literature but also in many other spheres of culture, with many artists and designers facing such a problem as well.

And that's pretty much it! Writing a proper article review isn't an impossible thing if only you apply enough effort and knowledge. And remember that if coming up with this paper proves way too effort-consuming for your taste, our custom writing service is always ready to help. Good luck!

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