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Occasionally you will be asked to write one as a separate assignment, but more often it is part of the introduction to an essay, research report, or thesis.In writing the literature review, your purpose is to convey to your reader what knowledge and ideas have been established on a topic, and what their strengths and weaknesses are.
In the sections from Step 6-9 what I have included is the outline of those steps exactly as described by Galvan.
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.
The number of sources that you will be required to review will depend on what the literature review is for and how advanced you are in your studies.
It could be from five sources at first year undergraduate level to more than fifty for a thesis. Keep a note of the publication title, date, authors’ names, page numbers and publishers. Each body paragraph should deal with a different theme that is relevant to your topic.
A literature review surveys scholarly articles, books, dissertations, conference proceedings and other resources which are relevant to a particular issue, area of research, or theory and provides context for a dissertation by identifying past research.
Research tells a story and the existing literature helps us identify where we are in the story currently.You show your understanding by analysing and then synthesising the information to: Work out what you need to address in the literature review.What are you being asked to do in your literature review? Check your assignment question and your criteria sheet to know what to focus on. Select appropriate source material: Use a variety of academic or scholarly sources that are relevant, current and authoritative.At undergraduate level literature reviews can be a separate stand alone assessment.The literature review is generally in the format of a standard essay made up of three components: an introduction, a body and a conclusion.It will help you considerably if your topic for your literature review is the one on which you intend to do your final M. project, or is in some way related to the topic of your final project. A literature review is an account of what has been published on a topic by accredited scholars and researchers.An extensive review of relevant material will include — books, journal articles, reports, government documents, conference proceedings and web resources.The Library would be the best place to search for your sources.It is not a list like an annotated bibliography in which a summary of each source is listed one by one.At university you may be asked to write a literature review in order to demonstrate your understanding of the literature on a particular topic.