Reaction papers are thought papers where you critique an article. As you read the assigned articles, point out 1) at least one interesting fact that you learned from the introduction, 2) study’s strengths, 3) the limitations of their research design (for example, the way they defined or measured their variables, the measures’ reliability/validity, their data collection technique [e.g., self-report, lab visits, direct observation]), 4) implications of their findings (so what do they findings mean in real world!. In your implications section you must relate the study’s findings to real life, and give it some context to make it relevant for lay people), 5) future direction ideas (what would you want to test next to build up on the findings of this research, and/or to address its shortcomings). – NO PLAGIARISM
General guidelines for writing reaction papers
(Read this document fully! It’s 5 pages and contains important information):
Reaction papers are thought papers where you critique an article. As you read the assigned articles, point out 1) at least one interesting fact that you learned from the introduction, 2) study’s strengths, 3) the limitations of their research design (for example, the way they defined or measured their variables, the measures’ reliability/validity, their data collection technique [e.g., self-report, lab visits, direct observation]), 4) implications of their findings (so what do they findings mean in real world!. In your implications section you must relate the study’s findings to real life, and give it some context to make it relevant for lay people), 5) future direction ideas (what would you want to test next to build up on the findings of this research, and/or to address its shortcomings).
These are some questions to have in mind as you read the article:
· Did they account for confounding factors?
· What other factors could explain their findings?
· Were the findings substantial? Who will benefit from these?
· What were some of the considerations or little things that the researchers took into account that strengthened their design?
· If you were to do subsequent investigations, what next steps would you take?
· Also, if the article posed questions in your mind, mention the questions and take a stab at giving answers too!
Show me that you’ve thought the article thorough. I evaluate your reaction papers based on the depth of your thoughts and how sophisticated and well explained your arguments comments are.
SUPER IMPORTANT NOTE regarding LIMITATIONS:
When pointing out the limitations, EXPLAIN how addressing the limitation could mean getting different results. For example, if the study’s participants are all socioeconomically advantaged and you see this a limitation because it’s not nationally representative, discuss how results of a mid/low SES sample could be different. Simply saying that the results aren’t “generalizable” IS NOT ENOUGH. You must justify your argument for selecting a more diverse sample, otherwise there is not enough evidence to suggest that the study’s findings are not generalizable! Again, please realize that it is your explanations and arguments that I evaluate, so don’t leave your comments unexplained or unsupported.
SUPER IMPORTANT NOTE regarding STRENGHTS:
I have found that students are often confused as to what they should consider a “strength” and what things are just “given (must haves!)” in a work that is published in an academic journal. Below are things that are NOT strengths, and rather “given”, so please don’t include these as strengths of the article! Violation of these can be considered a limitation:
· Random assignment
· Having conditions that differ on only one aspect
· Coders being blind to the study’s hypotheses
· Use of reliable and valid measures
· Citing relevant prior research
· High inter-rater reliability
· Having IRB approval
· Getting a baseline to compare post-intervention results with
To identify strengths, think about what steps the researchers took into account for possible little things that could skew their results. For instance, having “practice trials” before engaging kids in a computer game, to account for differences in familiarity with the game, device, etc. These are extra steps, and thoughtful ones, that researchers take, and are considered true strengths.
One more thing, in your reaction paper, refrain from statements such as “the paper was great”, “I liked this finding”, “I thought this finding was interesting”, without explaining why !! It’s okay to like the study, but it’s important to reason why you found the article interesting and important. Also, even if you really liked the paper, you must still be able to able to play the role of a sceptic and find few points to criticize the paper on. Your comments must be deep and critical rather than superficial or simply a reiteration of what was mentioned in the article.
Organization and Structure:
Start by summarizing the article in one very short paragraph (NO more than 3-4 lines)! And then continue critiquing the article. Reaction papers must be 2-3 pages. Note that most students can’t write a thorough reaction paper in 2 pages, unless they are true “concise writers”, so don’t stop at two pages, unless you’ve touched on several key points about the article (and don’t repeat the points you already mentioned, just to cover a third page!). Be sure to cover the five main key parts that were mentioned in the first paragraph, and know that your focus should be on limitations.
· WORD DOC only! No PDFs please.
· Times New Roman font, 12 point, Double spaced, 1” margin all sides.
· No cover page needed
· Citation of the assigned paper not needed. Any extra sources must be cited
· APA style of writing
· Submit your paper on canvas by the due date
· I will accept reaction papers only if they’re submitted before class time, AND if you are present in class to discuss your paper. If you absolutely have to miss a class where we’re discussing articles, you can make up the reaction paper by choosing an article on the topic of the week and write a reaction paper on the new article. Email me your reaction paper and the article PDF. You may earn a maximum of 40 points (instead of the typical 50 points) for this reaction paper. Only ONE reaction paper can be made up this way. So if you miss more than one article discussion day, I can’t give you the option to make it up again.
· Note that on the week when you are the presenting group, you will submit a single reaction paper collectively as a group. The organizer should upload this reaction paper (under his/her name) and the rest of group members don’t have to worry about uploading anything.
REACTION PAPER GRADING RUBRIC
Content (30 pts)
Grammar (10 pts); Correct choice of verb tenses, words, avoidance of wordy phrases)
Offers several high quality comments about the reading that demonstrate a high level of understanding as well as sophisticated analysis of the material. Embodies originality, complexity, and depth, rather than just a presentation of the obvious; shows evidence of effective inquiry and argumentation. Clearly shows evidence of “Critical” thinking
Is stellar in construction, with compelling wording, smooth transitions, and organizational clarity.
No errors whatsoever!
Demonstrates a good level of understanding and raises many points, but only one or none of the points demonstrate “deep” analysis where KEY factors are discussed (i.e., sticks to discussion of the obvious, like sample size and generalizability). All or most of the points that are raised are accurate
Language is generally appropriate to a professional audience and organization is sound.
Between 1-4 grammatical or punctuation errors, or typos, but they are minor and do not detract from the paper.
Offers few comments, and they are superficial. Some comments have accuracy issues (e.g., invalid criticisms, or discussion of a limitation that was addressed in the paper by taking a specific measure that resolved the issue completely).
Quality of writing may be inconsistent (i.e., quite good in some sections of the paper and of lesser quality in other sections. E.g., there are paragraphs containing critiquing points after what seems to be a concluding paragraph); organization needs improvement.
4-7 grammatical or punctuation errors, or typos.
Sounds more like a summary than an analysis. Offers only one or two comments which are on the superficial side.
Paper is incoherent, or unorganized with little agreement between ideas.
More than 7 grammatical, punctuation errors or typos. Errors impede understanding of content and require multiple readings and guessing to figure out the message that’s being conveyed.
QUALITY: 100% ORIGINAL – NO PLAGIARISM.
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