Attitudes about aging well among a diverse group
The written reflection should be balanced, identifying both strengths and weaknesses in the publication. Your critique should also contain a reflection on your own thoughts and learning from the article. Write succinctly – completed critiques should be no more than three pages (12 point font, double spaced, 1 inch margins). Please use a header with your name and number your pages, do not use a title page.
Research Focus and Significance
What is the identified research problem? If there are research questions, are they clearly stated, delimited, and congruent with the research problem?
What are the specific aims or purposes of the study? Do they match the research problem?
What is the public health significance of the problem (implications for the care of older adults, extension of science, test of theory, correspondence to National Institute on Aging priorities, etc.)?
Theoretical Foundation of Research
If there are hypotheses, are they clearly derived from theory?
What is the fundamental paradigm being used by the writer? Describe the appropriateness (match)/limitations of this paradigm for use in this study.
Effectiveness of Literature Review
How useful is the review of literature (inclusive or appropriate disciplines, well-organized, critical and synthesizing).
Does the review of literature provide a review of prior, current (<5 years old, except seminal and landmark studies) research conducted on the problem (including theoretical and empirical literature)?
Does the review of literature make clear what is and is not known about the problem? Is the information that is unknown, reflect the research problem for the study?
Overall Findings and Impression
How well does the researcher write? Is the writing accessible to a wide audience or appropriate to the targeted audience?
How does the material presented apply (or perhaps not apply) to your personal interests in the Psychosocial aspects of aging (think before you dismiss it)?
At the end of the report, is it clear what knowledge has been gained? Was the problem solved, research question answered, and specific aim/purpose achieved?
Give the research a letter grade and explain your grade.
You must proofread your paper. But do not strictly rely on your computer’s spell-checker and grammar-checker; failure to do so indicates a lack of effort on your part and you can expect your grade to suffer accordingly. Papers with numerous misspelled words and grammatical mistakes will be penalized. Read over your paper – in silence and then aloud – before handing it in and make corrections as necessary. Often it is advantageous to have a friend proofread your paper for obvious errors. Handwritten corrections are preferable to uncorrected mistakes.
Use a standard 10 to 12 point (10 to 12 characters per inch) typeface. Smaller or compressed type and papers with small margins or single-spacing are hard to read. It is better to let your essay run over the recommended number of pages than to try to compress it into fewer pages.
Likewise, large type, large margins, large indentations, triple-spacing, increased leading (space between lines), increased kerning (space between letters), and any other such attempts at “padding” to increase the length of a paper are unacceptable, wasteful of trees, and will not fool your professor.
The paper must be neatly formatted, double-spaced with a one-inch margin on the top, bottom, and sides of each page. When submitting hard copy, be sure to use white paper and print out using dark ink. If it is hard to read your essay, it will also be hard to follow your argument.
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