Literature reviews are a basis for research in nearly every academic field.
A narrow-scope literature review may be included as part of a peer-reviewed journal article presenting new research, serving to situate the current study within the body of the relevant literature and to provide context for the reader.
Pick up nearly any book on research methods and you will find a description of a literature review.
At a basic level, the term implies a survey of factual or nonfiction books, articles, and other documents published on a particular subject.
I also provide links at the end of this guide to resources that you should use in order to search the literature and as you write your review.
In addition to using the step-by-step guide that I have provided below, I also recommend that you (a) locate examples of literature reviews in your field of study and skim over these to get a feel for what a literature review is and how these are written (I have also provided links to a couple of examples at the end of these guidelines (b) read over other guides to writing literature reviews so that you see different perspectives and approaches: Some examples are: Read through the links provided below on APA guidelines so that you become familiar with the common core elements of how to write in APA style: in particular, pay attention to general document guidelines (e.g.It focuses on a of the relationship among different works, and relating this research to your work.It may be written as a stand-alone paper or to provide a theoretical framework and rationale for a research study (such as a thesis or dissertation).Literature reviews are also common in a research proposal or prospectus (the document that is approved before a student formally begins a dissertation or thesis).A fourth type, the systematic review, is often classified separately, but is essentially a literature review focused on a research question, trying to identify, appraise, select and synthesize all high-quality research evidence and arguments relevant to that question.I have integrated some other tips within this guide, particularly in suggesting different technology tools that you might want to consider in helping you organize your review.In the sections from Step 6-9 what I have included is the outline of those steps exactly as described by Galvan.At the graduate or doctoral level, the literature review is an essential feature of thesis and dissertation, as well as grant proposal writing.That is to say, “A substantive, thorough, sophisticated literature review is a precondition for doing substantive, thorough, sophisticated research…A researcher cannot perform significant research without first understanding the literature in the field.” (Boote & Beile, 2005, p. It is by this means, that a researcher demonstrates familiarity with a body of knowledge and thereby establishes credibility with a reader.an annotated bibliography in which you summarize briefly each article that you have reviewed.While a summary of the what you have read is contained within the literature review, it goes well beyond merely summarizing professional literature.