- April 11, 2020
- Posted by: IGBAJI UGABI
- Category: Thesis Writing Guide
How to write literature review
A literature review refers to the systematic search, collection and breakdown of existing scholarly journals, articles, textbooks and other literal publications.
By conceptualization, a literature review can be seen as a deliberate examination of works of literature or scholarly works written in a given field of study. The literature review is of many types. It could be evaluative, exploratory, instrumental, or systematic.
Typically, a literature review showcases the current state of knowledge in a given field and scientific findings. Moreover, breakthroughs in a given subject, gaps in knowledge in a given field, as well as theoretical and methodological scholarly works in a given field of study.
Literature reviews significantly differ from a book review and are often written as part of a research thesis both at undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate levels. A literature review is also an important aspect of journal papers, and research proposal (s), among others.
Majorly, information for literature reviews is gotten from secondary sources, and as such may or may not embody any new idea or approach.
In dissertation or thesis writing, literature reviews form a significant part of the work, and in often cases are the most voluminous, requiring lots of citations, effort, logical thinking and time.
In thesis writing, it is expected that the literature review should sufficiently provide information on the knowledge milestone in the given study, as well as highlight areas of need. This is achieved through the careful selection, collection and review of vast research work, which shares some similarities with the current study; this similarity is often seen in the variables the current study seeks to discuss. For instance, a researcher is working on ascertaining the factors that foster teenage pregnancy in Delta state. The research can go ahead to review other research studies which have teenage pregnancy as one of its variables.
Before you dive into writing your literature review, the following “to do “list should be adhered to:
- Search for scholarly works done, which are related to your topic, both in soft and hard copy. What this means is that your source of literature should not be based on internet sources alone; it should include published textbooks and print journals.
- Choose from the list of literature available. While selecting, ensure to pick those which are closely related to the current study, in either scope, research problem or the current study’s general objectives.
- Read thoroughly, the works of literature selected for review, and take notes by extracting the information needed from the said research studies.
- After you might have finished reading and internalizing the selected works of literature to be reviewed, take action. Act on the information extracted. Always remember to present them in a manner that aids understanding and shows the logical sequence.
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