The Development of Social Theory;(SOC2001)summarise and evaluate a text.It requires you to read the selected text in detail and to also read other related texts sothat you can present a fair and reasonable evaluation of the selected text.In other wordsit should also discuss the relevance of the book under review for thedevelopment of socialtheory.When writing a critical review, you must follow the standard essay writing rules, such as interms of grammar, referencing and bibliography.The presentation should be of a highstandard with proper citation of all references, complete with bibliography. Both anintroduction and conclusion are necessary and should indicate consistency and priorplanning.You are strongly advised to consult theSchoolas StudentHandbook aboutpreparing and submitting written work.Yourcriticalreview must, like any essay, have an overall coherence, in other words developan overallthesis.Essays will be marked with regard to interpretation, argument andpresentation. On interpretation, your essay should be relevant to the essay title andshould display understanding of the topic.Structure of a Critical ReviewYour critical review must cover the following issues, although the summary and critiquedo not necessarily have to be sequential (in other words, you may run thesetogether).IntroductionThe length of an introduction is usually one or two paragraphs.Itannounces the authorand the title, and briefly explains the topic of the text, such as discussingwhy it isinteresting and important. It isimportant that the introductionincludesa thesisstatement which identifies the main points you will be discussing in the body of thereview.SummaryTo summarise means to reduce a text to its main points and its most important ideas.You may find it helpful to present a summary of the key points along with a limitednumber of examples, explaininghow thetextis constructed andorganised.You shouldexplain the authoras purpose/intentions throughout the text.The best way to summarise is to:1.Read the text. Look for information that can be deduced from the introduction,conclusion and the title and headings. What do these tell you about the mainpoints of thetextand the ways in which they are articulated?2.Locate the topic sentences and highlight the main points as you read.3.Re?read the text and make separate notes of the main points.CritiqueA critical review is not simply a summary of the book under review: the stress is on theword acriticala.To be critical does not mean to criticise in a negative manner.This meansthat you must assess the items under review, which involves both explaining andexamining their arguments.Evaluating requires an understanding of not just the contentof the text, but also an understanding of a textas purposeand why it is structured theCritical Review Guidelines for SOC20012way it is. To do this well, you should attempt to understand the topic from differentperspectives (in other words,you shouldread related texts) and in relation to thetheories, approaches and frameworks in social theory.Other literaturemustbe drawnupon to develop your criticisms.Youmayfind ithelpful to considersome ofthefollowing questions (however,acriticalreview cannot be a list of answers to thesequestions,but must be a coherent and well?constructed argument):yiTo what extent has the authoras aim been achieved?yiWhat does this text add to the body of knowledgeof social theory?yiWhat is missing/not stated?yiIs there a clear problem, statement or hypothesis?yiIs the argument consistent?yiWhat kinds of evidence does the text rely on?yiHow valid and reliable is the evidence?yiHow effective is the evidence in supporting the argument?yiWhat conclusions are drawn, and are these conclusions justified?ConclusionThis is usually a short paragraphthat restatesyour overall opinion of the text and makesa final judgement onitsvalue.TheStudent Guidance Centrehas a Learning Development Service, which offeracademic help and advice and will assist you with your learning support requirements. Itoffers one?to?one advice that may cover study and organisational strategies, academicwriting skills, coping with examinations, managing deadlines, presentation skills andother topics related to academic studyYOU MUST USE ATLEAST 10 sourcesrecommened texts alan swingewood history of sociolical thought!
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