understanding a scientific article – exclusivewritings.com


One significant skill I hope you learn in taking this course is the ability to read scientific research; not the summary written by a non-scientist, but the original study itself. To that end, we will be reading research articles over the course of the semester. In this assignment, you will be extending the review of research from your first paper by analyzing one of the articles listed in its bibliography/references section. Please note that the article you choose MUST describe an experiment (you should be able to easily identify the sample). Articles that review the literature or describe simulations are not good fits for the prompts below and should be avoided. This is the link to the article https://aricjournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/2047-2994-2-22

Outline and Deadlines

The paper is due in the dropbox below by 3PM on May 1st. This allows me sufficient time to grade papers prior to the end of the semester. You are not required to have your paper peer reviewed, but it may be in your interest to do so.


  • Summarize the broad strokes of article (in your own words) as an introduction to your paper.
  • Answer the following questions (elaborate as is appropriate to demonstrate what you do and do not understand)
    • What is/are the research question(s)? Please be as specific as the article itself allows (a quote is ideal, but not all authors are explicit on this point) and their conclusions. Did they find statistical significance, and if so, at what level of significance (p-value, perhaps)
    • What is the actual population of the study? (Refer to Section 1.1 and our notes from the same section!!!!) Note that the population often is not clearly spelled out. If this is the case, state as much and discuss what YOU interpret the population to be.
    • What is the sample?
    • What are the most important variables they actually measure? Please be very matter of fact, don’t interpret what they kinda sorta mean; what numbers (or words, or data, or…) did they actually record and review.
    • In your opinion, do the findings have practical significance? How big of an effect was found?
    • What further research would you like to see that would improve the practical significance or generalizability of these findings?
    • How could you imagine the findings from this study impacting you future career? Feel free to pretend if need be, I will not confirm that you actually went into this field years from now.
    • How does this article relate to the first article you read? Why did that author include a reference to it? Why would that author have read this article in the first place?
  • Please upload a copy of the article with your writing when you submit


  • Clearly responds to the prompts above with minimal quotes
  • Write your paper in Word or PDF format.
  • Use Times New Roman or Calibri, 12 point font, double spacing, and standard 1 inch margins.
  • Use either APA or MLA formatting for all citations
  • Include a bibliography, include a citation for your article and the previous article in that bibliography. (We’ll discuss in class why you might want other citations in this paper)
  • I do not require a certain number of pages or words. I would expect 3-5 pages, but take as much space as is required to answer the above requirements completely
  • Review the TurnItIn report after submitting. If the report returns a value greater than 20%, please consider rewriting. If the report returns a value greater than 30%, definitely rewrite.

Final Notes

Before you submit the final paper (or even the first draft), go through the above requirements and formatting notes again. Ensure that you are not missing anything. Ideally, have your paper follow the same organization as in the requirements section. This makes grading easy and clear. If you follow that organization, it is very difficult for you to forget to respond to a prompt, or for the instructor to miss grading your response. Here is the link to the article again https://aricjournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/2047-2994-2-22