How To Review A Research Paper – A Complete Tutorial

If you are a very good student, chances are one day one of your classmates will ask you what your opinion is on some essay or other piece of work they intend to submit to a lecturer. You may intuitively know exactly what to do or you may feel a bit unsure. If it is more the latter than the former, consider the following brief tutorial.

Get together some great examples of research

Even if your own work is consistently exceptional, it helps to have some distance between yourself and the samples you decide to use. You could search the web for starters. There are entire websites that host academic content of all varieties which you can freely access. If you prefer to work offline, consider the professors you interact with most. Their samples should also be of a high caliber.

Compile a list of the traits they have in common

Look through the papers and see makes them similar. Many of these things should be familiar from your own writing so you should find it quite easy to identify winning traits. Put all of these observations together to make a checklist.

Read the paper you are meant to review

This can be tough. Some writers overdo it and complete an encyclopedia on the topic they have researched. Others are so very bad at what they do that their work is painful to look at. In either instance, take it piece by piece making notes of your first impressions so you can refer to them later on.

Go over it a second time with the list

Remember that checklist you were supposed to compile? This is the moment when you should use it. Look over the list and refer to the notes you made. Reread the entire thing if you feel it will make you more thorough but you may be able to get by on the notes alone.

Return it to the writer and consider discussing your findings

Your review is only really complete if you can properly convey your findings to the writer. Make yourself available to discuss everything with him or her and give helpful tips. This serves a dual purpose. Obviously it will help them with the corrections but it will also make the writer better so that future work will not need your help.

Give it a try and see how it works!


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