Summarize an Academic Journal Article

Objectives: to practice locating academic journal articles; to gain familiarity with the scientific method and the format of empirical academic journal articles; to practice utilizing APA style of citations and references.

Minimum Length: 750 words (not including references); put the word count at the end of your assignment; submissions that do not meet the minimum word count will automatically receive a 10% deduction and may be returned for revisions.

Format: See Style Guidelines located in the Module 1.

Required Citations and References: You are required to cite and reference the article you are analyzing using APA Style. Details about APA style can be found in the Style Guidelines located in the Week Zero Module.

Refer back to the article that you submitted for the Abstract assignment. Once you have received approval from the instructor to use an article, skim the article to get an idea of the topic. Now read the entire article again, focusing on answering the questions below.

NOTE: I do not expect you to understand everything in the article, especially in the results section, which may contain a lot of statistical terminology. Read for overall understanding without getting too distracted by the unfamiliar terms.

Write a brief report summarizing the research article that you read. Your report should be written in a standard essay format, with an introduction (stating the purpose of your paper), body, and conclusion. Be sure to answer all of the following questions in your report:

1. What is the research question(s)/purpose of the study?

2. What are some of the key findings from past literature that the author(s) discuss? How does this study differ from or build on previous ones? How does the past literature influence the current study?

3. Does the researcher have any hypotheses? If so, what are they? What are the independent and the dependent variables? If you don’t think the researcher has a hypothesis say so. You might speculate about a possible hypothesis (and accompanying independent and dependent variables) if you cannot locate a clear hypothesis.

4. Did the researcher use qualitative or quantitative methods? Specifically what type (e.g. experiment, survey, ethnography, etc…)? Explain the advantages and disadvantages of this type of method (be sure to cite sources).

5. What type of sample (e.g. random, convenience, etc…) does the researcher use? Explain what the advantages and disadvantages of this type of sample (be sure to cite sources).

6. What are the main results of the study?

7. What are some of the limitations of the study, as discussed by the author? Can you think of any additional limitations that were not mentioned? What are the strengths of this study?

NOTE: Be sure to review the Style Guidelines before submitting your report. Remember, no more than 10% of your report should be quoted material.

Grading Rubric



Dimension Sophisticated Developed Developing Absent Your


10 Clear understanding of author’s research question(s) 10 8.5 7.5 0
10 Summarizes key findings from past literature and identifies how current study is influenced by it 10 8.5 7.5 0
10 Accurately identifies hypotheses and variables 10 8.5 7.5 0
10 Accurately identifies the method used in the study and its advantages/disadvantages 10 8.5 7.5 0
10 Accurately identifies the sampling technique used in the study and its advantages/disadvantages 10 8.5 7.5 0
20 Clearly describes the major findings of the study 20 17 15 0
10 Identifies key limitations of the study 10 8.5 7.5 0
10 Mechanics (e.g. spelling, grammar, format, organization, cohesion and academic voice) 10 8.5 7.5 0
10 Appropriate usage of citations and references in APA style 10 8.5 7.5 0
100 Your % %

Revised 3/14