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Top 7 Best Ways to Review a Journal Research Paper

You can review a journal research paper just like a literature review which entails a critical evaluation. You have the chance to express your knowledgeable assessment of how another researcher has written their research paper and how they presented the arguments. It means that you will need a deeper analysis of the content in addition to a short synopsis. It might seem overwhelming to a college student. However, when you participate in the research process, you are immersing yourself in a specific topic, and your observations on how that issue is presented are essential. They can add to the dialogue surrounding your topic. This article will describe the top seven ways to review a journal research paper.

What ways can you adopt to review a journal research paper?

You can take the following steps to review a journal research paper:

1. Evaluate the Research Paper’s Purpose and Overall Argument

The first thing to look for when you review a journal research paper is to evaluate the core argument of the research. You must analyse the clarity of the overall argument made by the researcher and ask the following questions:

  • Does the introduction section provide proper background and context of the research?
  • Is the research problem well-defined?
  • Are the aims and objectives of the research clear and well-defined?
  • How accurately does the abstract capture the main ideas and stance of the research paper?

You can also hire a dissertation proposal writing service for better evaluation.

2. Analyse the Significance of the Research

The next thing to do when you review a journal research paper is to evaluate its significance of the research paper. Research must have significance, and it must add value to the literature. You must ask the following questions:

  • Does the current research add any value to the existing corpus of knowledge?
  • Has the researcher reviewed the literature critically?
  • How does the research aim to fill the identified gaps in the existing studies?
  • Was the researcher successful in filling the gaps in the literature?
  • Did the author review credible sources?
  • Did the author engage critically with the existing research?
  • Did the author include the latest and contemporary research in the literature review?

3. Evaluate the Research Methodology

Research methodology defines the practical steps researchers take for data collection and evaluation. You can review a journal research paper by thoroughly evaluating the research methodology. Also, the research methodology encompasses a well-defined methodology which can address the research questions. Furthermore, authors have to justify why did they choose a specific research method and what was its relevance to their topic. You must ask the following questions:

  • Was the research design and methodology appropriate to the research’s topic?
  • Did the researcher clearly define the data collection and analysis methods?
  • Did the researcher use sampling procedures for data collection?
  • Did the author specify the inclusion and exclusion criteria of secondary data?
  • Did the author specify the reliability and validity methods in the research methods?
  • Is the research method replicable for other research studies?

4. Analyse the Organisation and Structure

You can review a journal research paper by analysing the organisation and structure of the research paper. The organisation of ideas and consistency between the arguments are essential in research. Also, the ideas must be coherent and logically connected to the central idea of the research. Maintaining a flow of ideas represents the author’s capability to develop patterns and connect multiple ideas. You must ask the following questions:

  • How suitable and straightforward is the research’s topic?
  • Did the author consistently provide the ideas?
  • Did the author critically evaluate the sources and provide their arguments?
  • How strong are the author’s arguments?
  • What are the strengths and limitations of the author’s arguments?
  • Did the author use subtle and ambiguous statements?
  • Are the arguments logically consistent?
  • Did the author provide ample evidence to support the arguments?
  • Did the author provide evidence that was contrary to the assertions made by them?
  • How well-organised is the overall research paper, and does it fulfil the research’s aims and objectives?

5. Analyse the Author’s assumptions

Research is a process that promotes objectivity and disseminates objective knowledge. However, objectivity is an ideal the researchers aspire to but never fully attain. It is because researchers are human beings, and they have their biases and assumptions. Although researchers try to keep checking their biases, it is bound to seep into the research. So, it is essential to identify and evaluate the researcher’s biases and assumptions. You must ask the following questions:

  • How objective the researcher’s opinions are?
  • Which arguments are laden with value judgement and subjective notions?
  • Has the author’s cultural worldview and beliefs impacted the arguments?

6. Evaluate the Data and Results

The most important thing to remember when you review a journal research paper is to evaluate the data and research results. The data must be valid and credible because otherwise, it compromises the research findings. You must identify the calculations made by the researcher and look for the following things:

  • Are there any outliers in the data?
  • Are the statistical methods appropriate?
  • Are there any data points that the researcher replicates?
  • Is the data credible? Did the author use any validity and reliability tests?
  • Are the findings of the data consistent with the original research questions?
  • Did the findings address the research questions properly?
  • Did the author justify and compare the research findings with previous studies?
  • Did the author identify the limitations of the study?

7. Evaluate the Implications of the Study

Authors usually indicate the overall implications of the research in the conclusion and recommendations section. A research paper must have theoretical and practical implications for future research. You must analyse the larger implications of the research. You can ask the following questions:

  • What are the theoretical and practical implications of the current study?
  • Does the current research lead to the formulation of new theories?
  • Can the practitioners and policymakers benefit from the study’s findings?
  • Did the author provide clear indications for future researchers to expand the topic?


The ways mentioned earlier are the top strategies for reviewing a journal research paper. You can use the strategies for evaluating and analysing the research. However, it will sharpen your research skills and increase your knowledge. The ability to critically review a research paper enhances your analytical rigour and helps you in the research process.

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