Recent Question/Assignment

Paper Number: 143
Weighting: 40%
Total Marks: 100
Due Date: 22 August 2016
Specification: Critical Review of Published Research Article (approx. 2000-3000 words)
Your task in this assignment is to undertake a critical review of a research article. The paper number selected for you (see above) is from the recent Australasian Conference on Information Systems (ACIS) held in Adelaide in early December 2015. The conference website is:
You can also find a link to the program, full proceedings and individual papers here. Each paper has an individual paper number and your allocated paper is paper number: 143. You can also look at the ACIS Programs and Proceedings webpage:
Your critical review should follow the guidance provided by Allen Lee in his article, which you should have already obtained or can obtain now:
Lee, AS 1995, ‘Reviewing a manuscript for publication’, Journal of Operations Management, vol. 13, no. 1, pp. 87-92.
Professor Lee’s article includes 15 actionable activities all of which you need to address in your review. Lee’s article provides guidance about addressing the actions and illustrates the actions with sample comments. Some of the actions are obvious and even trivial (e.g. 15 is “Date your review”). Below is some further guidance about each action and in some cases an estimate of expected effort involved. Your report should be structured in this way so that the 15 activities are easily identifiable for the marking process. Use the numbered actions as a header and put your response to each of the actions under that header.
1. Start out with your own summary of the manuscript
This should be at least 500 words so it is clear that you have actually read the paper.
2. Let us know what your expertise does and does not cover
For example, sometimes the topic is tangential to our research interest or the research approach is one with which we are unfamiliar (e.g. statistical technique used), etc (perhaps 100-200 words at most).
3. Give actionable advice
In your approach to giving advice provide feedback with specific suggestions for any change.
4. Convince us by arguing from the authors’ perspective
Do not simply disagree with the paper’s approach. Put yourself “in the place” of the author and argue with them from their perspective. This does not mean you have to agree with them but you should try to see their position.
5. Provide general and specific comments
The amount of material here will depend on the actual paper being reviewed. General comments might be about the extent of the introduction and if it is helpful to contextualise the paper. There might be comments about use of theory, models, precision about construct and variable development, etc. Specific comments might be about simple corrections of English expression, spelling, etc.
6. Explain the manuscript’s strengths
This should be at least 500 words.
7. Quote the parts of the manuscript to which you refer
This is a general instruction which relates to many of the other activities. The point is that your advice to the author should be able to be located in their paper.
8. Offer comments on tables, figures, etc
Obvious, and depends on extent to which the authors have used tables, figures, etc.
9. Be kind
When you make your comments keep the commentary professional and without emotion. Be factual but also aware that you are talking with a potential colleague. Do not put in writing something that you would not say to the person’s face.
10. Be frank
As in 9, be factual and honest in your assessment but also succinct and express your views generally about the writing.
11. Do some library research
Do some background research on the paper which will most likely include looking at some of the references and/or work of a similar nature that has been published already either by the authors or by some other.
12. Suggest future research efforts
On reading the paper you will think of other research that could be or should be undertaken so you should provide some suggestions.
13. Suggest alternative approaches
Perhaps better or different approaches could be taken to the research of the paper, so explain options.
14. Provide citations
For instance, if in your library research about the paper you come across papers that the authors have not considered then provide citations.
15. Date your review
Obvious, just include the date that you undertook the review.

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