- 1. Learning Objectives
- 2. What is a literature review?
- 3. Types of reviews
- 4. What is the purpose of a literature review?
- 5. Planning the Literature Review
- 6. How to find literature
- 7. Organising the Literature
- 8. How to write a literature review
- 9. Citation practices
- 10. Examples of literature reviews
- 11. Summary
- 12. Feedback Survey
In this module, we have reviewed:
- the purpose of a literature review;
- the different types of literature reviews;
- how to conduct and organise a literature search;
- how to write a literature review.
A literature review is a text that provides an overview of the literature associated with a specific topic or research question. A literature review can form a section of a dissertation or research report, or it can stand alone as a journal article or book chapter.
A literature review:
- Presents themes, identifies patterns, locates gaps, and assesses material in texts directly related to your research question;
- Demonstrates your understanding of the literature and research associated with a particular topic or line of thought;
- Presents some of your rationale for developing and exploring a specific research question.
For you as the writer, the literature review provides a map of the theory and research related to your chosen subject of study. For the reader, the literature review can reveal your rationale for pursuing your line of inquiry.
Writing a literature review involves the following steps:
- Choosing a topic to explore
- Planning your research strategy
- Finding and evaluating texts, including books and journal articles
- Selecting the texts you will include
- Analysing, synthesising and interpreting your findings
- Creating an outline for the literature review
- Writing a draft
- Conducting any additional research
- Revising and finalising your literature review