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Critical Analysis of an Academic Journal Paper on Procurement

What is a Critical Analysis?

A critical analysis (sometimes called a critique, critical commentary, critical appraisal, critical review) is a detailed commentary on and critical evaluation of a text.

You might carry out a critical review as a stand-alone exercise, or as part of your research and preparation for writing a literature review.

a. To be critical does not mean to criticise in an exclusively negative manner.

b. To be critical of a text means you question the information and opinions in the text, in an attempt to evaluate or judge its worth overall.

An evaluation is an assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of a text. This should relate to specific criteria, in the case of a research article.

You have to understand the purpose of each section, and be aware of the type of information and evidence that are needed to make it convincing, before you can judge its overall value to the research article as a whole.?

Undertaking your analysis Read through the entire article, getting a general idea of the research aims, methods and results.

At this stage, you might have some general questions about the article that you think about: Is it clearly laid out? Are the results clearly presented? What are the main aims and findings? What methodology has been used? Work through each section in detail, and make brief notes.

Sections might include the abstract, introduction, literature review, methodology, results, discussion, conclusion.

How far does each section match up to what it should do? Are there particular strengths and limitations in each section? Why?

Explain your thinking.

You may need some evidence to support your view; for example, if you think that a sample of five participants seemed quite small, you should try to find a similar study that has used more than five, to cite as a comparison. Plan and write your critical review.

A short critical review should have a brief introduction, simply providing the subject of the research and the author, and outlining the structure you will be using.

The simplest way to structure a critical review is to write a paragraph or two about each section of the study in turn.

Within your discussion of each section, you should first sum up the main points such as the key findings, or methodology used, to show your


After this, you could present the strengths and weaknesses, as you see them, of the section, with an explanation of your thinking, and evidence.

It is useful to plan out each section of your review as a short list, or bullet points, so that you can see that you have included everything.?

Your submission The critical analysis should be no more than 1000 words in length.

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