Academic Writing Complete Guide

Purpose and Audience of this Guide
Why read academic articles?
Essay Writing
Report Writing
Oral Presentations
Finding Sources
Good Academic Scholarship
Understanding Feedback
Exam preparation and Techniques


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Reviews

Reviews entail the process of evaluating publications, a company, or a service like a movie, a book, music composition, a piece of hardware like a car and so on. The author, in his crystal review, may assist a rating to indicate the relative relevance of whatever he is reviewing. An author can also review current events, trends, news items and on. Reviewing a product or a service is a great skill since it allows a consumer to share their opinion on whatever they are reviewing. This helps others in getting information that regards a product or a service and is important in making the decision about whether or not they want to try it out.

Types of Reviews


There are many types of reviews that one can be asked to write. The most common ones include:

  • Book review
  • Movie review
  • Article reviews

Other types of reviews include:

  • Music review
  • Video games review
  • User reviews

Book review

This review is meant to examine a book based on its contents, style, and the merit of the entire book. It is mostly carried out in periodical s, online as well as class assignments. Its length varies a lot but it depends on the purpose. It can be a single paragraph and in some instances, it can be a fully-fledged essay. Reviews can be based on works of fiction, poetry, or nonfiction. As such, you must consider the literary merits ads essential elements. This method uses literary criticism and contains book evaluations that hinge on personal preference and the taste of the writer.

Literary periodicals use book reviews to display learning or disseminate the ideas of the reviewers on the topic of fiction or non-fiction. Sometimes, a book review may look like a plot summary. Non-fictional reviews target the instructional or informational purpose and can focus directly on the usefulness and reader-friendliness of the work.

When you are doing a book review, you should go beyond summarizing the contents to the critical discussion of the entire book. In other words, you are combining the accurate analytical reading as well as a strong personal touch. It must de3sribe the page and shows how the bool achieves its objectives. This is through expressing any reactions and argument for a unique perspective. A book review can be a primary source, opinion piece, a summary, or a scholarly review.

Movie reviews

The purpose of this review is to analyze and evaluate a movie. This gives the reader a chance to decide whether he will watch the movie or not. You have to show independence of thought when writing this review. This review demands the writer not to engage in watching trailers or spoilers of any kind. The reason is that the trailer only shows the best moments, the best action sequence, as well as the best dialogues in the movie. The review must be an honest and accurate analysis of the whole movie.

Film criticism and movie reviews are concepts that have been used interchangeably. Movie reviews target the consumers. However, you have to understand that not all criticisms take the form of movie reviews. A movie review has various purposes to achieve. They include:

  • Journalistic review
    This happens in newspapers, magazines and other forms of mass media
  • Academic reviews
    These are done by scholars who have an understanding of the film industry as well as the film theory. Their reviews appear in the academic journal. If students engage in movie reviews, they can use these journals as possible sources of information for their assignment. The purpose of academic reviews is to analyze the movie and place it in the history of that genre in the history if the film industry as a whole.

Qualitative movie review

To write this movie review, you must start immediately after you watch it because you are in a position to give more details accurately. On the other hand, you have to understand the big difference that exists between watching a movie on a ‘screen’ and watching it in a cinema. Do not use poor quality movies as the basis of your review.

As earlier said, you are not supposed to utilize spoilers as well as trailers. For this kind of review. It has to be an objective analysis. Spoilers are never objective and may give the wrong impression and their interpretation is based on a vague idea of what the movie is all about. If you want to write a good movie review, you must:


  • Watch the movie several times
  • Research extensively on the movie
  • Analyze the movie after watching it
  • Support your claims concerning the movie by providing examples

Music reviews

This takes short informative articles concerning the performers that were involved in a concert and the songs that were performed. They fall under the technical comments and the subject or artistic elements categories.

When it comes to the technical category, review the write examines the rhythmic togetherness, intonations, slip-ups and so on. For instance, a pianist may be playing a concerto and either missed a note or hammered it correctly. When it comes to the subjective elements, the writer comments on the elements that appeal to taste. To strike a balance between the elements in such reviews depends on the audience to which the writer is targeting. When you see music reviews on newspapers and magazines, you have to understand that they do not assume that the audience is familiar with the performers or the songs that were performed. As such, this type of review must include background information.

The recording of the music is also put under review. This entails the individual songs, pieces or an album in its entirety. If the review is based on an entire album, the review must deal with respective songs and how all of them work together.
In the review of the composition of classical music, the review hinges on the composition of the song regardless of its existence in the manuscript or it has never been performed. Music theory skills like the harmonic analysis and thematic analysis are utilized in this type of review. The combination of idioms and practice of composition becomes very crucial.

Literature review

It summarizes the body of a literature that concerns a thesis or a topic. The literature can come from databases and is usually very selective in the materials that are going to be utilized. When you locate relevant literature, it is important that you synthesize it. It provides to the reader a detailed overview of the topic by highlighting crucial areas of research. They assist the writer in identifying the gaps in research as well in refining and defining research question.

It is crucial to avoid confusing book reviews with literature reviews. Every academic field must utilize literature review as a way of aiding their research. In a literature review, the write must summarize, describe, and evaluate the perspectives of every source he has. This review appears as an independent section in research papers, dissertations thesis and so on. Your literature review must have the following sections:

  • The introduction
    It describes and emphasizes the importance of a topic. It focuses on various previous works as well as identifying controversies that exist in a field or any resident research. It pokes holes in earlier findings and suppositions from previous researchers. It gives the background history of the problem. Your introduction is supposed to close with your thesis statement.
  • The body
    This section is divided into heading and subheadings depending on the amount of information that the writer has gathered. It notes crucial topics, trends, themes or any other findings that the researchers agree or disagree on. If the literature review precedes research projects, it has to justify the purpose of the whole research.
  • The conclusion
    This is a summary of the evidence as well as its importance. If you have a review that introduces the audience to a research, you should highlight the gaps and show the relationship between the current and previous research. It should show the preferred methodology. If your literature review is a stand-alone, it should suggest any practical research application, the effects, and the possible future research.

When writing your literature review, you must:

  • Choose a working topic
  • Review the available and related literature
  • Narrow your topic
  • Read and evaluate the selected material thoroughly
  • Organize your paper by identifying patterns and developing subtopics
  • Develop a working thesis
  • Structure your paper based on the findings
  • Write the body of your review
  • Pay attention to the analysis instead of a description

When writing reviews of any kind, you are supposed to be creative and interesting. You must hook the reader and draw them in. you can use images that capture the essence of the work that you are reviewing. Reviews take different formats. Some are written as poems whereas others are tongue-in-cheek, where they convey facts in a humorous way. Either way ensures that your review is clear and concise. Do not do it with over-the-top praise or criticism. Use a simple language that is interesting and draws the audience in.


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