How to do a literature review for a dissertation

If you had wanted to write you would have done an arts degree, not a science degree. In some subject areas classic texts retain their authority for literally thousands of years; cutting edge scientific research will need to be more mindful of the dangers of consulting obsolete data.

How should it be structured? It must provide a critique of each work, not simply a summary of the books and articles to which you refer. Powered by Create your own unique website with customizable templates. You need to write a literature review as part of your research thesis, research dissertation, or for the article you are composing for peer reviewed publication in a scientific journal.

Or let the literature review write itself! There you go, your literature review is written. By formulating problems beforehand, you will avoid wasting hours in aimless reading.

In any case, when considering your inclusion and exclusion criteria, it is important to ask the following of each article: Is the author widely cited?

Now comes the fun part: I worked out this method when I was writing my own thesis, and have also applied it to writing introductions for peer reviewed journal articles.

Read through the almost completed document. Moreover, if you find that the literature available is too sparse, or conversely, insurmountable; it is worth reconsidering your research questions to develop a more constrained focus on the topic at hand.

As you summarize each paper write out the reference in full, thereby creating a References List. You should still have every citation you started with.

Key themes It will be necessary to identify, draw out, explain, interpret and evaluate key themes that emerge from the literature you have been studying. This article will tell you how to write a great literature review to get your thesis or paper off to a flying start, and leave you free to do the fun bit — the experiments.

It might be helpful to use subheadings or bullet points in your dissertation writing to clarify the different areas of theory and the positions of each writer. In practice, this process will ensure that the review remains concisely tailored to the topic discussed.

Significance over content A common mistake in writing a literature review is to get bogged down in flat descriptions of the content of the many books, journals articles and reports that you have been reading.

Top 10 tips for writing your dissertation literature review

If you are writing for a particular journal or person, try to find an example of what has been acceptable in the past — journals usually have instructions for authors, but look at their articles as well.

Rather than simply a list of different writers in the field and their opinions, your literature review should give a clear idea of the whole field as it currently stands, describing different bodies of literature, providing varying standpoints on the important issues, and indicating where general opinions have recently changed or are currently being challenged.

Challenge assumptions, generate arguments and give reasons for your reactions. Remember — a good literature review not only provides important background to your own dissertation writingbut also helps to show where your dissertation will fit into the field.

Wide search In order to write a satisfactory literature review you must demonstrate your ability to search out relevant material from a wide variety of sources.

You have to do a little bit of thinking at this point: Or you need to write a scientific journal article? Or commence a PhD? Theory Part of your analysis of reviewed material will almost certainly involve a consideration of the theoretical underpinning of each source, inherent working assumptions, paradigmatic aims, and so on.

Critical attitude Nothing must make it into your literature review which has not been scrutinised, questioned and dissected.Nov 02,  · To do a literature review, start by finding a variety of reliable sources that all relate to one topic or theme. Then, read through the sources and come up with a thesis statement for your paper.

Once you have your thesis, explain how the sources you used back up your thesis in the body of your literature review%(26). You've decided to do an honors year? Or commence a PhD? Or you need to write a scientific journal article? You need to write a literature review as part of your research thesis, research dissertation, or for the article you are composing for peer reviewed publication in a scientific journal.

Randolph, Dissertation Literature Review framework for the self-evaluation of literature reviews concludes the article. Purposes for Writing a Literature Review Conducting a literature review is a means of demonstrating an author’s knowledge about a particular.

Determine which literature makes a significant contribution to the understanding of your topic. Point the way to further research on your topic. Content of the Literature Review.

The Literature Review must be well structured, and your ideas must flow logically from one point to the next. Ensure sources and references are current and relevant, cited. Writing a Literature Review in a dissertation 2 | P a g e Books Published/ Unpublished Dissertations Journal Articles Getting Started You will need to discuss your dissertation topic with your supervisor and agree the.

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How to do a literature review for a dissertation
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