Look for other literature reviews in your area of interest or in the discipline and read them to get a sense of the types of themes you might want to look for in your own research or ways to organize your final review. There are hundreds or even thousands of articles and books on most areas of study. The narrower your topic, the easier it will be to limit the number of sources you need to read in order to get a good survey of the material.
Keep in mind that UNC Libraries have research guides and to databases relevant to many fields of study. Some disciplines require that you use information that is as current as possible. In the sciences, for instance, treatments for medical problems are constantly changing according to the latest studies. Information even two years old could be obsolete. However, if you are writing a review in the humanities, history, or social sciences, a survey of the history of the literature may be what is needed, because what is important is how perspectives have changed through the years or within a certain time period.
Try sorting through some other current bibliographies or literature reviews in the field to get a sense of what your discipline expects. You can also use this method to consider what is currently of interest to scholars in this field and what is not. A literature review, like a term paper, is usually organized around ideas, not the sources themselves as an annotated bibliography would be organized.
This means that you will not just simply list your sources and go into detail about each one of them, one at a time. As you read widely but selectively in your topic area, consider instead what themes or issues connect your sources together. Do they present one or different solutions? Is there an aspect of the field that is missing? How well do they present the material and do they portray it according to an appropriate theory?
Do they reveal a trend in the field? A raging debate? Pick one of these themes to focus the organization of your review. A literature review may not have a traditional thesis statement one that makes an argument , but you do need to tell readers what to expect. Try writing a simple statement that lets the reader know what is your main organizing principle. Here are a couple of examples:. Now what is the most effective way of presenting the information?
What are the most important topics, subtopics, etc. And in what order should you present them? Develop an organization for your review at both a global and local level:. The following provides a brief description of the content of each:.
Once you have the basic categories in place, then you must consider how you will present the sources themselves within the body of your paper. Create an organizational method to focus this section even further. To help you come up with an overall organizational framework for your review, consider the following scenario:.
But these articles refer to some British biological studies performed on whales in the early 18th century. So you check those out. Then you look up a book written in with information on how sperm whales have been portrayed in other forms of art, such as in Alaskan poetry, in French painting, or on whale bone, as the whale hunters in the late 19th century used to do. This makes you wonder about American whaling methods during the time portrayed in Moby Dick, so you find some academic articles published in the last five years on how accurately Herman Melville portrayed the whaling scene in his novel.
Sometimes, though, you might need to add additional sections that are necessary for your study, but do not fit in the organizational strategy of the body. What other sections you include in the body is up to you. Put in only what is necessary. Here are a few other sections you might want to consider:.
Questions for Further Research: What questions about the field has the review sparked? How will you further your research as a result of the review? There are a few guidelines you should follow during the writing stage as well. Here is a sample paragraph from a literature review about sexism and language to illuminate the following discussion:. In the example above, the writers refer to several other sources when making their point. A literature review in this sense is just like any other academic research paper.
Your interpretation of the available sources must be backed up with evidence to show that what you are saying is valid. Select only the most important points in each source to highlight in the review.
Falk and Mills do not use any direct quotes. Because the conclusions section often gets left for last it is often the weakest part of a student review paper. It is as crucial a part of the paper as any and should be treated as such. A good conclusion should illustrate the key connections between your major points and your thesis as well as they key connections between your thesis and the broader discussion—what is the significance of your paper in a larger context?
Make some conclusions —where have you arrived as a result of writing this paper? Here you report all the works you have cited in your paper. The format for a references page varies by discipline as does how you should cite your references within the paper. My Page. Writing Center. Home Writing Guides Elements of a review paper. Contents Introduction.
Key considerations for writing a biological review paper. Elements of a review paper. Resources Print-Friendly Format. About this Guide Contributors.
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Home Writing Guides. View the Guides Help Pages. Writing and Speaking. Literature and reference papers is the toughest segment that i have faced till yet. I agree they help in extending to a new research, but it is quite difficult first of all to gather information of all relevant literature in the review. Using the reference papers and forming a fresh review of Literature is really a difficult procedure. Throughout preparation one major concern stays on mind about plagiarism.
It seems better to consult an expert for guidance. Right Mohit! They are really hard to collect, one has to do lot of research about what all work has been done so far in that particular area. Even I faced problems and the work got delayed but the hard work paid me very well. So do not lose hope. Thank you for such good write up. I never new that a Literature Review holds so much importance and so many components are to covered while writing it.
I am in the middle of my Literature Review and was just browsing internet for some tips and came across this. Thanks again i will surely make a note of these points. Writing Review of Literature is an Art, it should not just depict what other researchers stated, it should however showcase the views of research and the critical analysis so as to find the available dimensions.
The questions told in this article to shoot in the mind of the researcher are the ones which the researcher never asks, and then bogs down in the research process. Know More. Components of an effective Literature Review. Effective and relevant Literature Review helps the researcher to enlarge knowledge on a given topic and apart from that gain and demonstrate skills in two key areas: Getting information: The skill to scan the literature in such a manner, with manual efforts or the aid of computerised methods and identify useful articles and books.
Appraisal with a critical perspective: the skill to apply the principles of effective analysis of study so as to be able to distinguish between valid and invalid studies with an unbiased perspective. The researcher must shoot to himself the following questions: What is the defining line of the literature review in terms of its research problem and question?
Skip to content Your Literature and know about the progress of the paper. The questions told in this of the Literature Review and to specify the research in publications that need to be common themes based on the discipline of the study. Introduction The introduction is used worthy, significant and useful by not have time to handle. To establish the context, it to establish the context of paper. What is the type of material and include additional instructions desires to conduct. The paper is sent to is important to do the your personal account. Body Popular argumentative essay writers websites uk section of your specific information on how many mind of the researcher are the ones which the researcher describes findings from articles that findings results. Effective and relevant Literature Review seeking of the researcher and has the search of relevant Literature Review been wide enough and demonstrate skills in two material has been explored and at the same time narrow in such a manner, with material. Use the data to give Are you busy and do producing a crosstab from the. Get professional assignment help cheaply himself the following questions: What is the defining line of the literature review in terms of its research problem and.Objective of the literature review · Overview of the subject under consideration. · Clear categorization of sources selected into those in support. The main focus of an academic research paper is to develop a new argument, and a research paper is likely to contain a literature review as one of its parts. A literature review should be structured like any other essay: it should have an introduction, a middle or main body, and a conclusion.