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Knowing how to summarize and critique an article is one of the most dreaded things for most college students. It’s even worse if you don’t know what the paper requires of you or what to write about. Generally, your main goals when summarizing and critiquing an article depends on how well you can structure and lay out your arguments and facts.

How to Summarize and Critique an Article

Writing an article critique requires you to critically read and understand the research paper and reflect upon it. Its’, therefore, vital that you identify all the strong and weak points and assess how well the author uses them. Simply put, a good critique paper reflects upon the effectiveness and validity of the author’s arguments used on his/her work.

As with a summary paper, your main objective is to read and understand the entire paper and then use it to write the paper in your own words. Learning how to summarize an article effectively is a skill that not all students possess. As a result, you find most students prefer to use online essay writing services such as to write their article summaries.

It’s evident that it takes time, practice, and dedication to know how to summarize and critique an article. This excerpt aims to provide you with more in-depth information on how you can summarize and critique your papers. Keep reading:

Steps on How to Summarize and Critique an Article

Although summarizing and critiquing an essay may seem simple, it takes a lot to write an effective paper. After the initial explanation, reading and discussing a paper from a critical point of view is one of the simplest ways of putting it. Still, writing an effective article critique is much more complicated and challenging for most students.

How to Summarize and Critique an Article

A good article critique must be able to deliver on the following:

  • Instead of just summarizing the key points of the paper, you criticize them. Here’s where most students get things wrong. Criticizing a paper doesn’t mean that you summarize it. Writing a critique paper requires that you provide a unique opinion and discussion about the paper from your point of view.
  • Provide not only your impressions and opinions about the author’s work but strong evidence to back up your arguments.
  • Clarify the background and purpose of your paper even as you identify and critique the author’s ideas.
  • Focus more on the issues that the author raises in the article as well as the ones that he/she avoids.

These are some of the most critical aspects that you must know how to employ to write a strong critique paper. Remember, it’s not just a matter of knowing how to summarize and critique an article; you must also know how to express your opinions in writing.

The steps mentioned below should help you get a better understanding of how to summarize and critique an article:

Active Reading

You cannot summarize or critique an article or paper without reading and understanding it first. Your professor may provide you with a very long journal that has terms that you might not understand. And that’s why simply reading the paper won’t be enough. You must engage in active and close reading to ensure that you understand what your professor expects you to summarize or criticize.

It would also be best if you accompanied the context with some research to enable you to define and understand all the terms that you didn’t know before. During this process, you’ll also observe details and facts about the text that make it easier to summarize and criticize.

How to Summarize and Critique an Article

Reading the paper also enables you to identify all the key points of the author and know how to summarize and critique them. You’ll, therefore, definitely need to write down all the key points. Ensure that you identify all the key aspects of the paper as you read the article. You might probably need to read the article several times to get a feel of the message the author intended to pass. Do this right, and you should be better-placed when summarizing and critiquing the paper.

Develop a Preliminary Outline

This is one of the key elements that any student who wants to know how to summarize and critique an article must learn. It’s vital that you have a thorough understanding of the paper that you intend to summarize or critique. Take plenty of notes as you write so that you have enough content to use as the flesh of your paper.

Afterward, you can organize the content you’ve collected in a preliminary outline. Remember, this is just a preliminary outline since it still doesn’t provide you with sufficient data to use in critiquing the author’s work. You will, therefore, just have to plan how you will discuss all the key points of the article before you can use them to argue your case.

What is the Difference between Summarizing and Critiquing an Article

Whenever you write and submit an article summary or critique, ensure that you understand what your professor expects from you. Usually, the first thing that your professor checks after you submit your paper is whether you understood the instructions. Did you understand the difference between writing a summary and providing an analysis of the paper?

An article critique isn’t a summary. It is an analysis of the paper from a more critical point of view. And although the purpose of writing the paper isn’t to persuade the reader, you must develop a convincing discussion. And the best way of achieving this is by checking if your overall message is logical.

This section of your paper demands that you do additional research, especially if you don’t understand what the paper is about. It’s, therefore, always best to search for other similar examples and compare their hypothesis with that of the paper you intend to summarize of critique.

how to summarize and critique an article

It’s also important to note that you’re not obligated to write a negative critique when questioning the author’s key points. Your critique can also be positive if you agree with all of the writer’s key points. However, if you don’t agree with the author’s main points, write your remarks as well. And if you are somewhere in between, you can write both positive and negative elements in your paper. Whatever the case, ensure that you use strong arguments that support your points effectively.

Identify Contradictions

Throughout your reading, you will likely identify some contradictions in the author’s work. It’s one of the key elements to note when learning how to summarize and critique an article. It’s important to note that writers, whether intentional or unintentional, can sometimes be biased in their work. They are, therefore, likely to ignore contrary evidence and sometimes even misinterpret their work. All writers are always looking for ways to use sources and turn them to their advantage, even if it’s at the cost of the paper’s credibility.

An architect with traditional education may, for instance, have prejudices towards feng shui. They might, therefore, ignore some crucial evidence that proves the benefits of using that method. The same is also true for a medical expert that doesn’t approve of using Chinese medicine.

It’s important to note any biases that you find in the paper. Here’s where you’ll also find the contradictions to use to critique the paper. Whenever the author uses another work as a source, check it for credibility. Sure, this will require even more reading. However, it’s what will help you to identify any weak points in the author’s work that you can critique. If the author cites untrustworthy evidence, you can also add it to your critique points.

Write It

By this stage, you probably already have enough notes to use to summarize and critique the article. This should enable you to organize your work in a clear outline that your audience can read and understand. It also allows you to arrange all your key points in a logical progression by discussing your main critiques in the first paragraphs.

Once you are ready to start writing, ensure that you:

Disclose Your Main Arguments in the Introduction

As with any other type of essay, writing the introductory part of an article summary or research critique is vital. Remember, it’s how you introduce your summary or critique paper that determines whether the reader goes through the rest of the paper. Your introduction must, therefore, be precise, concise, and to the point. By that, it must entail all the key points that you intend to use in your paper.

If you’re writing a critical paper, you must include all your main contradictory points in this section. It should outline your main argument so that it gives your audience an idea of what your paper is about.

How to Summarize and Critique an Article

Write the Body Paragraphs

Here’s where the real critique now starts. Any student who wants to learn how to summarize and critique an article must know how to structure his/her paragraphs. It’s vital that each body paragraph has one main point and explain it in detail. Your article paragraphs can be much longer, too, provided you incorporate all your key points in each paragraph. You may use subheadings to separate your key points and improve the readability of your paper.

Each of your body paragraphs must also start with a topic sentence to introduce the reader to what the paragraph is about. Ensure also that you maintain a logical connection between your paragraph. Your reader should be able to transition from one paragraph to the next easily.

How Do You Write a Summary Critique?

A vital component every student must know to learn how to summarize and critique an article is how to summarize their paper. This conclusion section of your paper requires that you summarize all your main critique arguments. You can also suggest the potential implications of using sticking to the author’s notes.

When summarizing your critique, you can also recommend further research that sheds even more light on the issue. Ensure that you try and provide better alternatives to the writer’s work that you just criticized.


This is one of the most crucial steps for anyone looking to know how to summarize and critique an article. An article critique is a serious paper and one that you shouldn’t take lightly. You must, therefore, be able to showcase your capacity for writing a critical and argumentative paper. After all, you’ll be criticizing and providing reasons why a paper isn’t up to par.

If you fail to revise your paper, even the slightest flaw can ruin the reader’s impression of you. Remember, the main goal of writing a summary or critique paper is to convince the reader why your paper is more accurate.

Ensure that you also pay attention to the sources and citations that you use when revising your paper. Check whether you referenced all your sources properly and whether you formatted the paper correctly.

The Layout of a Good Article Summary

With what you know so far about how to summarize and critique an article, it’s important that you now know the layout and structure of your paper. Below is a detailed list of which writing format you should use to summarize your paper effectively.


As aforementioned, the first sentence of your introductory paragraph must capture the reader’s attention. You can write an interesting or funny introduction provided it lies within your topic sentence. After that, use the introduction to identify the author whose work you intend to criticize and the article title. It might also help to include any background information about the author in the introduction, even just their credentials.

Ensure also that you include a strong thesis statement or topic sentence towards the last section of your paper. The thesis statement must explain your key points to the reader and transition to your first paragraph smoothly.

Body Paragraphs

The first sentence of each paragraph should be a topic sentence that introduces your supporting arguments. Students must know how to summarize and critique an article before actually writing such a paper.

In this section, it’s important to summarize each of the author’s supporting points in separate paragraphs unless instructed otherwise by your professor. It’s also important that you discuss all supporting arguments in the body paragraphs and expound or condense them. Be sure, however, to discuss all evidence that the author uses as well as the conclusions that they make about each specific point. If possible, stick to one supporting argument for each body paragraph.

How to Summarize and Critique an Article

When learning how to summarize and critique an article, it’s also important that you summarize all the author’s arguments. You can use phrases that remind your audience that you are simply paraphrasing an article. Some of the phrases that you can use throughout your paper may include:

  • The author states that…
  • The author believes that…
  • According to the author…
  • The author argues that…

The Conclusion

The conclusion section of any paper is just as vital as the introduction. Anyone who wants to learn how to summarize and critique an article must invest in the conclusion section. Studies show that most readers remember the conclusion and introduction parts of an essay more than the rest of what they read. Ensure, therefore, that you invest richly in your conclusion so that the reader leaves with something.

Begin your conclusion summary by restating your topic sentence. Remember, however, not to write your thesis statement verbatim. Your readers may think that you didn’t put much effort into writing the paper. Anyone who wants to know how to summarize and critique an article should also know how to incorporate the main points of the paper in the conclusion paragraph. Write them in such a way that the reader can easily understand and remember them. This is particularly important when summarizing an empirical paper.

Still Not Sure How to Summarize and Critique an Article? Hire a Professional?

As already mentioned, you don’t always have to struggle with your paper alone. If you are not entirely comfortable writing a summary or critique paper, you can always hire a professional writer. is the leading online essay writing service that you can use to write and deliver high-quality, unique summary and criticized paper. Trust in Ukessay’s team of seasoned writers to deliver completed orders that meet all of your writing preferences. also offers article summaries that have been written by professional expert writers from all over the world. And all you have to do is provide the writing service with your assignment instructions, contact details, and payment methods and let UKessays’ writers get to work.

How to Summarize and Critique an Article


From the above excerpt, learning how to summarize and critique an article requires a lot of practice and time. Writing an article critique is a complex academic writing challenge, especially if you don’t know where to start. Luckily, the writing tips and tricks mentioned above should help you to write a better summary and critique article. You can also hire a seasoned writer from to get the job done for you.

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