Cellular pathology(critical review of topical paper)


Word Limit: 350 words (include a word count at the end of your review)
Date Set: 26th February 2009
Submission Deadline: 5th March 2009
Please note that this deadline is absolute and not negotiable. Reviews will not be accepted after the deadline unless written evidence of mitigating circumstances is provided.
This assignment must be word processed or typed, hand-written work will not be accepted.
You are provided with a copy of a short paper concerning an application of Fine-needle aspiration cytology. Imagine you are working for a reviewing journal and have been asked to write a short critical review of the paper. There is limited space to publish the review and hence it must be no longer than 350 words. The review should be critical, but should also include an outline of the aims of the study, a summary of the results and the authors main conclusions. See Module Guide for further information on writing the review.

PLEASE NOTE: You should confine the review to the material presented in the paper and therefore, you do not need to cite other papers/texts in producing your review.

Critical Reviews
” Critical Reviews (CRs) are essays based on scholarship i.e. on finding and reading the literature on a topic, and adding your own considered arguments and judgements about it. CRs thus involve both reviewing an area, and exercising critical thought and judgement.

” In writing a CR you will become more an expert in that particular topic than anyone else who have not done so.
Doing your review
Your review should include:
” Summary of the paper. This of course reveals what you think is important about it (e.g. results, conclusions, methods, etc.).

” Summarising the topic or field: not just the paper in question, but the field as a whole e.g. commenting on the coverage of the topic by published work. In this case concentrate only on the paper given for your assignment.

” Offering value judgements i.e. being critical.

Being critical
There is more than one way of being critical. However, a really good review not only reviews a field in its own terms, but questions whether that line of work and type of study is in fact sensible for answering the questions of interest.

Expressing your critical views
” Make it clear in the CR which aspects of criticism are yours and which come from the literature. If they are your own, you get credit for original analysis.
” Please remember that if you copy directly from the paper, this is plagiarism and you will be penalised.

First class versus merely ordinary quality
” A first class review should have more than what is specifically expected in a critical review.
” In addition to showing me that you know something about the paper/topic, you must show evidence that you understand it also.
” It is much more convincing if you apply or restructure the conceptual material because that shows understanding at a deeper level.
” At a deeper academic level, reorganising and criticising the paper demonstrates that you have thought about it, and understand it.

Improving the quality of your work
” To improve the quality of your work, revise what you write.
” When you no longer want to change it when you yourself read it through, get someone else to read it and comment on it.
” This is easily the single biggest thing you can do to improve quality, but you have to allow some time for it.
” Please remember that it wont work to delay work until near the deadline, write it in a hurry, then wonder about readers: you have to plan ahead.

Brink-Budgen, R van den (2000) Critical thinking for students: learn the skills of critical assessment and effective argument 3rd edn. (Oxford: How to Books)