Critical Appraisal and Research Design
Students will submit a draft research design and question (300 words) in Week Three (for formative
feedback). Assignment One is due 1700 Friday Week Five. When selecting research publications for
your Critical Appraisal please do NOT select entire books, entire theses, or book reviews as the
subject of your appraisal. Aim for media studies research articles, book chapters or theory building
Length: 1,500 words (1,200 for critical appraisal, 300 for research design)
Task: Students enter the academic conversation by developing and presenting a critical appraisal
(written) of TWO recent research journal articles (or book chapters) AND developing their research
design (300 words) and question from the student’s topic area for Assessment Three. The appraisal
will be written up in 1,200 words in the genre of a literature review (or segment thereof) to be handed
in and posted at UTS Online by the end of Week Five. SEE SUBJECT INFORMATION up at UTS
Online for NOTES on Critical Appraisal.
Students are to select two recent media studies research publications (journal articles or book
chapters) and critically appraise them, evaluating them for their clarity of expression,
presence/absence of research question/hypotheses, research design, the clarity of the explanation
of theory and method; clarity of description of data; originality and contribution to the academic
conversation; whether the conclusions are well supported by the evidence presented.
Students should also submit their research design and question that they will be using for
Assessment Three at this time: the question should be worded as a question and be incorporated
into a 300-word research design (What data do you plan to gather and analyse? What method do you
plan to use to investigate the data? What theory/concept from the subject readings will you be
Weight distributed as follows: Tutor mark for written work 30%.
All students are advised to take the quiz under the LIBRARY button to see if you need to attend a
literature-searching workshop we are organising to be provided by UTS Library scheduled for Week
Two (during tutorial time). You can take the quiz several times but if you find it hard then sign up for
Students are expected to post assignments to UTS Online AND hand in hard copies to their tutor.
Please use assignment cover sheets.
Criteria: Clarity of written expression
Clarity and strength of argument
Relevance of sources selected for annotation
Accuracy of referencing
Suitability of research methodology
Relevance of opinions expressed