Critical appraisal of a research paper
Choose a research paper from the set provided by module tutors.
Write an evaluation of this paper, with an emphasis on issues of quality, including validity and reliability of the research*. Your answer should focus on:
• The research paradigm
• Research questions /hypotheses/ issues
• Methodology used, including (where applicable)
o the research subjects or participants/ research sample
o ethical considerations
o data collection methods
o Data analysis
The aim is to analyse and comment on the research, not to simply describe it.
You should make explicit reference to research methodology literature to support your evaluation.
* depending on the research paradigm within which the paper is set, you may wish to use other terms/ ideas to judge the quality of the paper.
Understanding of theory and methodology:
Evidence of understanding key methodological concepts. Development of a critical perspective. Ability to express argumentation coherently. A thorough but critical examination of the literature.
Application to teaching and/or learning context(s) where applicable:
Ability to relate the theory and the literature to specified context(s).
Organisation & presentation of argument:
Clarity of thought and presentation. Ability to identify and aIDress the key issues arising out of the question set. Builds clear logical arguments. Backs up claims with evidence. Avoids unsubstantiated sweeping statements.
Appropriate use of quotations and paraphrasing. Fully and comprehensively referenced using standard academic conventions. Clearly distinguishes between own work and that of others.
When marking student work staff will use these criteria to guide their marking. If you want to improve your work, pay attention to what we are looking for and make sure you’ve done this in your writing. For example, the fourth criterion shows you that we pay attention to your referencing- so make sure you check this before submission!
This assessment relates to the following intended learning outcomes for the module:
On successful completion the student will be able to:
1. Understand and critique a variety of methodologies in TESOL and linguistics research and apply these methodologies in the collection and analysis of data
2. Understand and critique different types of TESOL research data and linguistic evidence
3. Critically evaluate TESOL and applied linguistics research according to appropriate criteria
4. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of ethical issues connected with applied language and TESOL research
Transferable/Key Skills and other attributes
On successful completion the student will be able to demonstrate:
1. High level written communication skills(synergizing new information into coherent arguments)
2. Critical thinking skills (critical appraisal of arguments; logical thinking; use of evidence to support arguments)
3. IT skills (use of online data bases for information gathering, using IT to present and edit written work)
4. Referencing skills