Optional Paper/Video for general section. One optional paper (or if you prefer a video presentation) that reviews AND critiques, one or more journal article(s) in developmental research are offered as an option during the course of the semester. These review papers will involve an in-depth review of a professional research article in developmental sciences.
Some journals to look at include: Child Development, Developmental Psychology, Journal of Experimental Child Psychology and Developmental Science.
Journal Article Critique Optional assignment–BELOW are some questions that may help you think about the articles you are critiquing. These are NOT questions to answer–DO NOT cut and paste these into your paper. These are questions you can ask yourself about the paper(s) you are reviewing/critiquing.
This last section is the critique part–so it is where you can earn the most points.
1. Use of appropriate article?
Did the student review/critique an appropriate journal article? (Note: Students can use 2 or more articles but if you use use more than 1 article you must integrate them and the articles must be related (i.e., on the same topic))?
Was this an empirical study? Was this a developmental study?
NOTE: Articles in the the following journals are typically given higher grades: Child Development, Developmental Psychology, Journal of Experimental Child Psychology and Developmental Science. However, the article must be an empirical article (a study that is conducted so the article MUST have a Method and Results section to qualify).
2. What are the psychological or environmental factor(s) and the developmental outcome(s), and what is their purported relationship? How did the researchers conduct the study that suggested a relationship between these factor and this developmental outcome? (Questions listed below are examples of what you can write about as you are telling about the study and about the findings of the article. YOU DO NOT have to answer each question in your paper).
Was the theoretical perspective (or developmental themes) of the author(s) discussed in relation to the article’s goals and findings?
Describe the importance of the developmental outcome
Describe the prevalence of the psychological or environmental factor(s). How likely are these factors to stay stable or to change across development?
What is the design that is used to study these factors across development and is it measuring consistent concepts across development.
What link is suggested between the these factor and developmental outcome?
Who were the participants in the study and what measures were taken from the participants to understand the developmental concept?
How do the measures they use relate to the goals and the findings? Are the measures used consistent across developmental periods that are studied? Why or why not?
Describe the results of the study (DO NOT quote here—use your own words to describe the findings).
Bullet point 6 should be general, not specific. For example, you can say there were 56 adolescents who participated in the study 3 times across their high school years. I do not need to know their exact ages or that they were from Italy or whether they are from an urban area unless it is important to the outcomes the article obtained. In addition, I don’t need to know the exact tests they used but rather what the tests were intending to measure. The entire section should be your understanding and interpretation of the method and findings and their meaning for understanding development, (in YOUR words, not the words of the authors directly).
3. What is an alternative explanation for the results of the study?
Why might there have been a relationship between measures of exposure to the environmental (or psychological) factor and indicators of a particular developmental outcome, (even though there may not, in fact, be a causal relationship between these two variables)?
Is there any evidence for an alternative explanation of the findings?
What important information do you now know in developmental science and how does this contribute to your thought process related to future developmental research?
What problems could arise if people unquestioningly accept the proposed relationship and don’t consider your alternative explanation as a possibility?
What future work and thoughts could contribute to improving developmental science outcomes?
This is YOUR thoughts and ideas about the study and how it relates to your understanding of development. This section is worth the most. YOUR thoughts on how this article contributed and what you still want to know about this topic in developmental science so that science can move forward on this topic.
Below I uploaded the article to use as reference
Also downloaded instructions needed within the paper