What justification did the authors give for their study? Based in prior research, where did they find a problem or a gap? How was their study proposed to address the problem?

Research Studies in Early Childhood Education

Criteria for high quality quantitative or qualitative research article follow.

Utilize the criteria and questions below to organize your article critique using the boldface headings (APA style).

Introduction

(This includes review of the relevant literature, prior studies)

  1. What did you learn from reading the introduction and the review of other studies within this article?
  2. What justification did the authors give for their study? Based in prior research, where did they find a problem or a gap? How was their study proposed to address the problem?
  3. What are their research questions? Are these questions consistent with the problem identified in their review of prior studies?
    • The problem should be researchable and clearly specified.
    • The problem/question should be important such that any findings will contribute to the literature on this topic.

Method

Briefly describe the design, procedure (including participants and roughly the steps the authors took & variables used to conduct the study.

  1. The problem should indicate the type of research design and procedure
  2. Include the evaluation research designs described in our text. What kind of evaluation research do you think this is? Why?
  3. The researchers should specify the sample (participants) and why this sample was chosen. Include how the participants were found, recruited, or chosen.

Results & Discussion

Describe the findings of the study and comment on the authors’ interpretation of the findings (their conclusions).

Limitations and Assumptions –(subheading)

  1. Did the authors give any insight into the limitations of the study? Did they offer any suggestions for future research?
  2. Did the authors make any assumptions? Were they justified?
  3. Explain factors that may affect the reliability (did you get a sense of how the measures might have been reliable or checked for consistency between observers’ ratings?)
    • or validity (were the measures reported to have validity based on prior studies’ usage of the measures?)
    • or generalizability (can you expect the results of this study to be the same for everyone else?)? In other words, do you feel that the study’s specific findings can be generalized to other populations? Why or why not?
  1. c)  What questions do you have from reading this study? Do you have suggestions for further investigation?