GUIDELINES FOR SUMMARIZING A JOURNAL ARTICLE

The journal article should be based on an experimental study, or at least good survey data, whereby the researcher directly uses a reliable sample, collects and analyzes the data, discusses the findings, and draws a conclusion. The summary should be descriptive and expository in form. The summary MUST NOT be more than 2 pages in length and follow APA format. Once the student has chosen an empirical article based on an issue, problem or topic of interest using the website, the following questions should be addressed.

GUIDING QUESTIONS:

1 – What is the purpose, basic concern/issue or goal of the study?

Consider : Independent  and dependent variables of the study

What behavior was of primary concern

What is the main hypothesis

2- What is the essential method of study or research strategy used in the study?

Consider: The participants, it’s characteristics and size

The type of study, qualitative or quantitative, experimental, correlational

How was the study carried out

What measures were used to quantify the variables in the study

3- What was the main effect , findings or results of the study?

Consider: Did the results support or reject the hypothesis (es)

How were the results analyzed and by what statistical procedure

4 – What conclusion (s) was drawn?

Consider: Can the results be generalized to similar or other situations or conditions

What other relevant issues need to be addressed based on past evidence of other studies (This will be indicated in the Introduction of the study)

Was there an issue you think was overlooked by the researcher

5- Based on the overall study, what are the implications, value, fruitfulness of the research.

Consider: Your own critical evaluation looking at the methods, results, conclusion 

(This is your chance to think like a fellow researcher)

Does the study make sense from your point of reference and lived experiences. What would you change about the study? The hypothesis, the participants, the method of analysis, the conclusion…

Advice: Read the article more than once. Summarizing an article is not intuitive so it takes time to learn brevity, clarity, accuracy in two pages or less. This is important especially when summarizing longer articles.    

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