Guide literature reviews

Review the literature. Has this study been cited?

literature review structure

When writing your review, keep in mind these issues. While conducting a review of the literature, maximize the time you devote to writing this part of your paper by thinking broadly about what you should be looking for and evaluating. The Oxford Handbook of Interdisciplinarity. A literature review: situates your research focus within the context of the wider academic community in your field; reports your critical review of the relevant literature; and identifies a gap within that literature that your research will attempt to address.

Engage in a dialogue with the literature, you are not just providing a summary.

how to write literature review for thesis

When to review the literature With small-scale writing projects, the literature review is likely to be done just once; probably before the writing begins.

Use the bibliographies and references of research studies you find to locate others. This is the most common form of review in the social sciences.

what is literature review in research methodology

Be wary of saying that your research will solve a problem, or that it will change practice. Purpose of the literature review The purpose of the literature review is to provide a critical written account of the current state of research on a selected topic: Identifies areas of prior scholarship Places each source in the context of its contribution to the understanding of the specific issue, area of research, or theory under review.

Narrow the Topic The narrower your topic, the easier it will be to limit the number of sources you need to read in order to obtain a good survey of relevant resources.

It is usually presented as a distinct section of a graduate thesis or dissertation. How might your research add to this understanding, or challenge existing theories and beliefs?

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