Guidelines for Writing a Critique

Guidelines for Writing a Critique

What is a critique?

The term critique can cover a wide range of paper formats, but in general a critique is an assessment of a piece of writing, usually a book, article, or essay. This might be something as simple as a personal response to a novel or it might mean a more scholarly analysis of an academic article. Unless the directions specifically ask for a first-person response, your critique will likely need to be an analysis of the text's main argument written in the third person.

Getting started

The first step in writing a good critique is to do the reading. You're not going to be able to say anything about the text if you haven't read it, so take the time to go through the assigned book or article closely. Take notes as you go so it will be easy to go back and pick out important sections for analysis. Key things to look for include the author's thesis and the evidence he provides to support his argument. Also take the time to look up any words and concepts you aren't familiar with so you're certain you understand the author's argument.
Once you've finished the reading, try to write a summary of the author's main argument. You want to make sure you understand the author's thesis well enough to be able to restate it in your own words, plus you'll be able to use the summary in your paper. The last thing you want to be sure to do before you start writing is to prepare a strong, clear thesis statement that sums up your analysis of the work.

Writing the critique

Introduction. Start your introduction by providing the necessary information about the book or article you're evaluating. Give the author's name, the title of the work, the date of publication, and the author's main thesis, then finish the paragraph with your own thesis statement.
Summary. Next you want to summarize the author's argument. Discuss the points they are trying to make along with the evidence they use to back up their claims. Be careful not to make this section of your paper too long-you want to spend the majority of the paper on your own words and ideas, not just summarize what somebody else wrote.
Analysis. This will be the meat of your paper; it's where you take a critical look at the author's work and judge how successful he is at making his point. Structure your body paragraphs so that each one includes your analysis, evidence from the original text, and an explanation of how that evidence supports your point. There are a number of ways you can analyze the success or failure of a text:
  • What are the author's credentials?

    An author's background can give him authority or weaken his argument. Is the author a recognized expert on the issue being discussed? Has he published in respected outlets like peer-reviewed academic journals or well-known magazines? Conversely, has the author previously been criticized for shoddy or unreliable work? Keep in mind that you don't want to attack the author as a person - don't bring up his personal life or other issues that provide bias instead of information. Instead, focus on the author's professional credentials and track record.
    When evaluating the author's background, you should also look for whether the author is relying on his credentials instead of evidence to prove his argument. This tactic, known as argument from authority, is a common trick in persuasive writing.
  • Is the author's evidence accurate?

    Is the author basing his argument on sound evidence? If the book or article relies on statistics, check to see if those statistics can be corroborated. If the author cites research, facts, or opinions from other sources, check the original source to make sure that the author has used that information correctly. Also check to make sure the author's evidence is current - if he's using out of date statistics that's a reason to question the accuracy of the argument.
  • Did the author use sound methods to gather his evidence?

    If you're critiquing a primary source like a research paper you'll want to take a close look at the author's methodology. How sound is the experimental design? Did he use accepted techniques to collect data? If you're critiquing an opinion piece or an article that cites other sources, take a look at how those sources were collected. Did the author do a complete survey of the available evidence or did he cherry-pick evidence that fits his argument while ignoring competing data?
  • Did the author interpret the evidence correctly?

    Even if the evidence is impeccable it's still possible for the author to use that evidence incorrectly. You want to ask whether a normal reader would interpret the evidence the same way the author does. If not, does the author make a persuasive argument for his interpretation? Also ask if the author misinterprets the evidence or if there's an alternate explanation for the evidence that the author doesn't address.
  • Is the author's logic sound?

    Is the author's argument logical? Check for common logical fallacies like circular reasoning, ad ignorantiam (arguing that something is true because it can't be proven not true), argument from incredulity (saying that because you can't understand something it can't be true), conflating correlation and causation, and tautologies (statements that must be true because of the way they're written).
  • Does the author address counter-arguments?

    Part of writing a successful argument is anticipating counter-arguments and addressing them head-on. In your critique, look for any counter-arguments the original author missed. Are they enough to derail the author's point? Is there evidence out there that would support a different argument than the one the author is attempting to make?
Conclusion. Wrap up your critique by summarizing your evaluation of the author's argument. Is he successful or unsuccessful? Provide evidence of your own to back up your assessment. Depending on the assignment you may also use this section to provide a personal opinion on the book or article you're critiquing.

Our TOP writers

TOP 10
Writer 132520
ID 132520

Master's in Project Management, PMP, Six Sigma

Rating 97.3%
(97.3%)
CUSTOMER REVIEWS (8) about writer 132520

2566 written pages

514 orders

447 a+ papers

My Master’s degree and comprehensive writing experience allow me to complete any order fast and hit the nail on the head every time.

hire writer
TOP 10
Writer 99549
ID 99549

MBA, PMP, ITIL

Rating 98.2%
(98.2%)
CUSTOMER REVIEWS (7) about writer 99549

7876 written pages

985 orders

896 a+ papers

I am experienced writer with an MBA, PMP, ITIL, that consistently delivers unique, quality papers. I take pride in my experience and quickness.

hire writer
TOP 10
Writer 107967
ID 107967

MS in Human Resource Management

Rating 97.6%
(97.6%)
CUSTOMER REVIEWS (9) about writer 107967

1561 written pages

174 orders

169 a+ papers

I hold a MS degree in Human Resource and my goal is to help students with flawless, unique papers, delivered on time.

hire writer
TOP 10
Writer 103589
ID 103589

RN, MSN, PCN, PHN

Rating 97.2%
(97.2%)
CUSTOMER REVIEWS (6) about writer 103589

4111 written pages

457 orders

407 a+ papers

As Registered Nurse (RN, PCN), I can quickly deal with any medical paper. My expertise and writing skills are perfect for this job.

hire writer
TOP 10
Writer 121526
ID 121526

MPA, MHA

Rating 99.3%
(99.3%)
CUSTOMER REVIEWS (8) about writer 121526

1229 written pages

413 orders

388 a+ papers

I have MPA, MHA degrees but, most importantly, experience and skills to provide unique, well-written papers on time.

hire writer
TOP 10
Writer 47072
ID 47072

DNP, BA, APN, PMHNP-BC

Rating 99.2%
(99.2%)
CUSTOMER REVIEWS (9) about writer 47072

34051 written pages

3406 orders

3065 a+ papers

I can write about multiple areas and countless topics, as I have a DNP and BA degrees. High-quality writing is my second name.

hire writer
TOP 10
Writer 90763
ID 90763

PhD in American History

Rating 97.2%
(97.2%)
CUSTOMER REVIEWS (8) about writer 90763

11471 written pages

1148 orders

1079 a+ papers

A PhD in American history comes handy. Unique papers, any topics, swift delivery — helping with academic writing is my passion.

hire writer
TOP 10
Writer 124685
ID 124685

MA, PsyD, LMFT

Rating 98.8%
(98.8%)
CUSTOMER REVIEWS (7) about writer 124685

1711 written pages

286 orders

260 a+ papers

Incredibly fast PsyD writer. Efficient paper writing for college. Hundreds of different tasks finished. Satisfaction guaranteed.

hire writer
TOP 10
Writer 92876
ID 92876

MEd, NCC, LPC, LMFT

Rating 100%
(100%)
CUSTOMER REVIEWS (9) about writer 92876

6403 written pages

1282 orders

1167 a+ papers

Top-ranked writer with tons of experience. Ready to take on any task, and make it unique, as well as objectively good. Always ready!

hire writer
TOP 10
Writer 156385
ID 156385

MSW, LICSWA, DSW-C

Rating 99.7%
(99.7%)
CUSTOMER REVIEWS (8) about writer 156385

1494 written pages

299 orders

272 a+ papers

Experienced Social Work expert focused on good writing, total uniqueness, and customer satisfaction. My goal — to help YOU.

hire writer

Buy your papers from the best writing service

Have your tasks done by our professionals to get the best possible results.

total: $8.51
Confidentiality

NO Billing information is kept with us. You pay through secure and verified payment systems.

Quality

All papers we provide are of the highest quality with a well-researched material, proper format and citation style.

Communication

Our 24/7 Support team is available to assist you at any time. You also can communicate with your writer during the whole process.

Authorship

You are the single owner of the completed order. We DO NOT resell any papers written by our expert

Originality

All orders are done from scratch following your instructions. Also, papers are reviewed for plagiarism and grammar mistakes.

Samples

You can check the quality of our work by looking at various paper examples in the Samples section on our website.

Special price $8.51/page
Place an order
63,000
more than 63,000 times students trusted us to write their papers
9/10
9 out of 10 customers recommend us*
92%
92% of our customers have placed more than 7 orders
*data is based on 6,568 customers' feedback received from Jan 1, 2017 till Jan 1, 2018.
Special price $8.51/page
Place an order
Customer #5000

I usually complete the tasks myself. But sometimes there are those ridiculous assignments, good for nothing but a waste of time. I have lots of other work to take care of. And when I get such assignments, I know where to look for help. Thank you and all your writers.

Customer #2407

Overall services are worth the price I paid. Slightly delayed paper was ok since I placed an order in advance. I did save time on my own research and writing and could get ready for class without any stress. Thank you.

Estimated Deadline: Friday, Jul 08 5:53 PM in Your timezone
Total price: $8.51
Price starts from $8.51
Regular discounts and offers
Excellent results guaranteed
Professional 24/7 support

Free samples of our work

There are different types of essays: narrative, persuasive, compare\contrast, definition and many many others. They are written using a required citation style, where the most common are APA and MLA. We want to share some of the essays samples written on various topics using different citation styles.

services
Hey, you...Yes, you! Don’t you want to get your Discount?
binder1
binder2
Your discount will be
sent to the email!

I have read and agree to the Terms of Use, Money Back Guarantee, Privacy and Cookie Policy of BestCustomWriting.com

  • dmca_logo
  • safecharge
  • trustpilot

Use your opportunity to get a discount!

To get your special discount, write your email below

  • dmca_logo
  • safecharge
  • trustpilot

Best papers and best prices!

Want to get quality paper done on time cheaper?

  • dmca_logo
  • safecharge
  • trustpilot