pdf file .—————————————————————————————————— grading expectationssummary W r i t i n g

pdf file .—————————————————————————————————— grading expectationssummary W r i t i n g

GOAL One of the main objectives of this course is to learn how to be a wise consumer of psychological research. This research critique will give you practice reading and communicating clearly and effectively about psychological research.


All readings are available as pdf files inside this “Research Paper” module.

For this assignment, please choose ONE of the sets listed below. Each set consists of two items: (a) an original peer-reviewed journal article, and (b) a media report covering the research. Choose the set that is most interesting to you!

  • Set 1: Peer values & inclusion

(a) Peer-reviewed journal article: Murrar et al. (2020). Exposure to peers’ pro-diversity attitudes increases inclusion and reduces the achievement gap. Nature Human Behavior.

(b) Media report: https://news.wisc.edu/showing-pro-diversity-feelings-are-the-norm-makes-individuals-more-tolerant (Links to an external site.)

  • Set 2: Identities & flexible thinking

(a) Peer-reviewed journal article : Gaither et al. (2020). Thinking about multiple identities boosts children’s flexible thinking. Developmental Science.

(b) Media report: https:// class=”screenreader-only”> (Links to an external site.)

  • Set 3: Values affirmation & everyday numeracy

(a) Peer-reviewed journal article: Peters et al. (2017). Improving numeracy through values affirmation enhances decision and STEM outcomes. PLOS One.

(b) Media report: https:// 2: READ AND WRITE

First, carefully read both the original peer-reviewed journal article and the media report.

Then, write a paper with two sections. Please use headings to separate your two sections. Double-space your document and use a 12-point font (Times New Roman or similar).

First section of your paper: Summary of the peer-reviewed article (~300 words; this is just a guideline!). Briefly summarize the key aspects of the journal article. Your summary should include answers to the following questions: What were the main variables? What was the key finding or findings? What theory do the findings support or refute? Use concepts you have learned about in this course to communicate the research design and findings.

Second section of your paper: Critique of the media coverage (~500 words; this is just a guideline!). Analyze and critique the journalist’s coverage of the research, using what you learned from reading the original journal article. In this section, make two significant points, dedicating separate paragraphs to each point. Each significant point should be a different argument, critique, etc. about a different question or issue; you should use concepts that you have learned about in this course to make your points. You may choose from the following questions to guide your critique:

  • What did the journalist get right?
  • What did the journalist get wrong, and why?
  • What might the journalist have said differently?
  • If the journalist made any causal claims, were they accurate? (Apply the 3 causal criteria).
  • Did the journalist focus on the same key finding as the scientists did?
  • Did the journalist accurately describe the procedures of the study? Did the journalist leave details out?


Use the “Submit your research paper” assignment inside this module to upload your paper. Please submit a pdf file.


Grading expectations

Summary (8 points): Accurate, concise, non-plagiarized summary of the key points of the original empirical article. Includes the main variables, the key findings, and the theory the findings support. Writing is clear. Writing reflects your own understanding; direct quotes from the research article are avoided.

Critique (12 points): A thoughtful analysis and critique, containing two significant points, of how well the journalist covered the research. Clear writing and critical thinking.

A reminder that your paper must be original work! The paper you turn in must be your own work that you have written yourself for this assignment. You may not:

  • Copy words from another student or any other source, unless it is marked as a quotation and attributed to the source
  • Copy something and then alter the words to make it a little different
  • Paraphrase without attribution
  • Turn in work that somebody else wrote

All of the things listed above are plagiarism, which is a serious violation of academic standards and can result in you failing the course. Don’t do it! Please see the syllabus for more information. If you are not sure what is allowed, please ask! All papers will be checked by SimCheck/TurnItIn, which is software that can automatically detect plagiarism.