How to write a persuasive and effective scientific review article?
A research article identifies a solution to a research problem, but a review article identifies the literature gaps. Review articles can help you find a new topic of research and access information on the current state of research. Scholars and academicians who intend updating their knowledge and garnering relevant data for their research can read such type of articles.
What is the purpose of writing a scientific review article?
A review article makes the readers aware of the scope of the topic. You should focus on the key concept of the paper so that you can present a critical analysis to your readers. The inference is based only on the previous data provided in the published paper. Identify the literature gaps and inconsistencies in the result/conclusion to ensure the paper contains valid and accurate data.
Another reason for writing a scientific review paper is to analyze and evaluate the methodology and approach adopted by the original author. Other authors can access the review articles to save their time and effort in writing the literature review. It helps them develop a better understanding of the topic and create a rough framework to proceed further with their research.
Develop insight: Review articles focus on the main topic and research findings that help the readers develop a basic understanding of the subject.
Identify literature gaps: Review articles help the readers to know about the scope and aim of the research. Authors can explore a new subject area for their future research by identifying the literature gaps.
Guiding researchers: Evidence-based research is a key requisite for publishing. Therefore, researchers cannot continue their research if they do not have enough evidence. Review articles can work as a valid data source and guide researchers in completing their experiments.
Identify patterns and trends: A review article is a credible information source that helps the authors gain knowledge and insight without having to read the entire paper. Authors can identify the current patterns and trends in their respective fields of study by reading the critical analysis.
Main steps involved in writing a scientific review article:
Select a topic: Pick a journal of your choice and skim through the articles. Shortlist the articles based on the research evidence and list of citations. Read the article for a minimum of 3 or 4 times to identify whether or not the research is relevant to your subject. Ensure the selected article is accurate and comprehensible.
Identify the keywords: Read the article and identify the main keywords. Verify whether the publication date indicates the actual date the article was received for review or when the article was accepted for publishing. Keywords are inserted to define the field of study and the main topic of research. It makes an article searchable and helps get more citations.
Details: Read the introduction and abstract thoroughly to identify the 5W’s and 1H. If a paper has a solid background research information, then you might need to read it more than once. These two sections contain the essential details that form the basis of the article.
Create a title: An effective title informs the readers about the subject of the article. The title should represent the result of the research. The average word count of a title is 8 to 12 words.
Name: List the names of the authors who have contributed to the paper. You can either list the names alphabetically or in the order of their involvement in the project.
Prepare the abstract: This section informs the target audience about the objectives and results of the review article. If you are writing a narrative abstract, then include the content table. For writing an informative abstract, describe the research context so that the audience can understand why you have chosen the article for review.
Write an introduction: List the questions that you would be addressing in your review article. Explain the objectives, outcomes, and research design. Elaborate on the context and provide relevant details such as:
- Explain the topic of research to the readers, in one or two lines.
- Address the issue of concern mentioned by the author.
- List the primary and secondary information sources.
- Explain what you wish to prove through your review.
- Include the main characteristics of research such as the sample size.
Read the article at least twice to comprehend the information. You should know how to apply analytical reasoning to articulate your views. Your focus should be on identifying the literature gaps and inconsistency in the data.