Take some time to look over the resources in order to become familiar with them.
The tabs on the left side of this page have additional information.
The literature review is not a comprehensive history of your topic, but a way to provide context to your reader about research that has preceded your study.
Be aware that the literature review is an iterative process.
The ability to review, and to report on relevant literature is a key academic skill.
A literature review: To some extent, particularly with postgraduate research, the literature review can become a project in itself.This Study Guide explains why literature reviews are needed, and how they can be conducted and reported.Related Study Guides are: Referencing and bibliographies, Avoiding plagiarism, Writing a dissertation, What is critical reading? The focus of the Study Guide is the literature review within a dissertation or a thesis, but many of the ideas are transferable to other kinds of writing, such as an extended essay, or a report.Your interpretation may be self-evident to you, but it may not be to everyone else.You need to critique your own interpretation of material, and to present your rationale, so that your reader can follow your thinking.Conducting a literature review is a means of demonstrating the author’s knowledge about a particular field of study, including vocabulary, theories, key variables and phenomena, and its methods and history.Conducting a literature review also informs the student of the influential researchers and research groups in the field (Randolph, 2009).You need to demonstrate to your reader that you are examining your sources with a critical approach, and not just believing them automatically.Your interpretation of each piece of evidence is just that: an interpretation.It is an important showcase of your talents of: understanding, interpretation, analysis, clarity of thought, synthesis, and development of argument.The process of conducting and reporting your literature review can help you clarify your own thoughts about your study.