A critique, by definition, is an act of criticizing: It is a critical discussion/review. Critiques should examine and evaluate the way in which a scientist sets out to solve a problem and integrate his or her findings into the body of research that preceded the work. A literature critique should not be exceedingly long (a few pages will suffice). The student should evaluate and recognize the processes involved in the study, the research analysis, and the research publication. Remember, the purpose is one of evaluation, not merely description. Evaluation is the act of deciding what is good, bad, or mediocre. It requires taking a debatable position on the work you read. Read and reread the paper carefully with increasing attention to detail each time.

As you read the paper, consider the following points:

The critique should be written in paragraph form. The length of the critique does not reflect the quality. The critique should be typed and include a title page. Students may be required to include a complete copy of the original article. 

Although it is important to summarize aspects of the paper, the most important part of the critique is your analysis of the scientific merit of the work (methods, results, and conclusions) and the generality or scientific importance of the findings.