Psychology Writing Assignment

You are responsible for analyzing an academic research article. You will choose one of the articles provided, read through it (multiple times) and address the items listed. Please review the resources on how to read a journal article, especially if you are unfamiliar with doing so. They are material that generally should be read more than once to get a good understanding and in order to be able to provide a thoughtful critique.

Please review the material below carefully. Your paper must include the following components. Point values for each are provided. Each component should be discussed in a separate subsection of your paper. Highlight the transition from one section to the next using the appropriate APA style level 2 subheading.


  • Topic of Study (2pts)
    • Provide a brief overview of the topic for your study
    • Identify the research questions they are trying to answer and the specific hypothesis, that is, what is their prediction about what they will find?
  • Who are the participants? (2pts)
    • Describe briefly and in your own words who participated in the study.
    • Outline their basic characteristics and if you can, explain where the researcher found their sample and why they were selected.
  • What happened? (3pts)
    • Describe how the research was conducted. Summarize the procedure in your own words.
    • You should also include information about
      • The type of study it was (experiment, correlational design, descriptive study)
      • The specific variables that were either manipulated or measured and briefly, how this was done.
  • Conclusion (3 pts)
    • Explain briefly what the researchers found
    • Describe the findings in your own words and make sure to report whether the results were consistent or inconsistent with the research hypothesis
  • Critical Analysis (5 pts)
    • Think about the article and the study and provide a critique. Some items you might consider:
      • Do you see any problems with the way the study was conducted?
      • Do you think there were any biases that might impact the findings?
      • Do you think that the findings of this article are useful for explaining behavior in the real world? why or why not?
  • Follow-up study (5 pts)
    • Regardless of what type of study you analyze, you need to propose a follow-up EXPERIMENT. Think about what wasn’t explained by the research or what the logical “next step” might be.
    • You should explain briefly
      • What your independent variable will be and how it will be manipulated
      • What you dependent variable will be and how it will be measured
      • How the study would be carried out
      • Why the study should be carried out – justify why this would be a useful study to conduct.
  • APA style citation (lost points if incorrect)


  • Your article should be chosen from those available on Canvas. If you wish to use a different article, you MUST obtain approval from the instructor prior to completing your paper.
  • You are NOT writing a full APA-style paper, rather you are incorporating APA style into this assignment. You do NOT need to include a cover page. (See below for a sample of the formatting.)
  • The length of the paper should be roughly 4 pages, using a normal font size, double-spacing and regular margins. Note, I am less concerned about length and more concerned about quality. Papers will be graded based on whether or not the appropriate information is included as well as on the clarity of your communication. Please make sure that you re-read and proof-read your paper before submitting it.
  • Don’t forget to include an APA style citation of the article being analyzed at the end of your paper.


My Name

Psy 138 – Final Paper

Due Date

Research Article Review

Topic of Study

This is where you briefly describe the topic of the research article. You need to also include the author(s)’ hypothesis/hypotheses in this section.


This is where you describe the sample, in your own words. Do NOT copy from the article itself. If the researchers picked a specific set of participants for a specific reason, note it here.


This is where you describe the research methodology in your own words. Make sure to highlight what type of research design was being used. If it is an experiment, identify the IV(s) and DV(s) and how they were manipulated or measured. For other designs, make sure to include information about the variables being measured. Make sure to summarize – don’t include all the details in the actual method section. Include an overview of the procedure, highlighting the main variables and procedural elements.


This is where you describe the results, in your own words. Do not include numerical values from the article. Write the findings in words, your own words. What did they find and was it consistent with what they expected?

Critical Analysis

This is an important section – demonstrate your critical thinking skills by critiquing the article. There are several items you might consider listed in the table above. In order to earn full credit, you need to not just list items but explain your ideas. Also, your critique needs to be more than just criticizing the participants in the study. That does not demonstrate a high level of critical analysis.

Follow-up Study

This is also an important section. In this section, you need to describe a follow-up study to the one in your article. Think about what might be an additional study that could shed more light on the topic. Avoid saying that you would do the same study again just with different participants. This will not earn you any points. Your follow-up study needs to be original but related to the same topic. Explain exactly what you would do, highlighting the IV and how you would manipulate it and the DV(s) and how you would measure them. Also, explain your reasoning for doing the study – why would it be a useful study to do? What would you expect to find?

*****Then, on a separate page at the end of your paper, you must include the APA-style citation.

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