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Second are the reviews of those studies that summarize and offer new interpretations built from and often extending beyond the primary studies.Third, there are the perceptions, conclusions, opinion, and interpretations that are shared informally that become part of the lore of field.In composing a literature review, it is important to note that it is often this third layer of knowledge that is cited as "true" even though it often has only a loose relationship to the primary studies and secondary literature reviews.
The goal is to deliberately document, critically evaluate, and .
Typically it focuses on a very specific empirical question, often posed in a cause-and-effect form, such as "To what extent does A contribute to B?
The unit of analysis can focus on a theoretical concept or a whole theory or framework. Problem formulation -- which topic or field is being examined and what are its component issues? Literature search -- finding materials relevant to the subject being explored. Data evaluation -- determining which literature makes a significant contribution to the understanding of the topic. Analysis and interpretation -- discussing the findings and conclusions of pertinent literature. What types of sources should I review (books, journal articles, websites; scholarly versus popular sources)? Should I summarize, synthesize, or critique sources by discussing a common theme or issue? Read them to get a sense of the types of themes you might want to look for in your own research or to identify ways to organize your final review.
If your assignment is not very specific about what form your literature review should take, seek clarification from your professor by asking these questions: 1. The bibliography or reference section of sources you've already read are also excellent entry points into your own research.
The narrower your topic, the easier it will be to limit the number of sources you need to read in order to obtain a good survey of relevant resources.
Your professor will probably not expect you to read everything that's available about the topic, but you'll make your job easier if you first limit scope of the research problem.A literature review surveys books, scholarly articles, and any other sources relevant to a particular issue, area of research, or theory, and by so doing, provides a description, summary, and critical evaluation of these works in relation to the research problem being investigated.Literature reviews are designed to provide an overview of sources you have explored while researching a particular topic and to demonstrate to your readers how your research fits within a larger field of study.The theoretical literature review helps to establish what theories already exist, the relationships between them, to what degree the existing theories have been investigated, and to develop new hypotheses to be tested. Should I provide subheadings and other background information, such as definitions and/or a history?Often this form is used to help establish a lack of appropriate theories or reveal that current theories are inadequate for explaining new or emerging research problems. Use the exercise of reviewing the literature to examine how authors in your discipline or area of interest have composed their literature review sections.This approach helps highlight ethical issues which you should be aware of and consider as you go through your own study.Systematic Review This form consists of an overview of existing evidence pertinent to a clearly formulated research question, which uses pre-specified and standardized methods to identify and critically appraise relevant research, and to collect, report, and analyze data from the studies that are included in the review.Argumentative Review This form examines literature selectively in order to support or refute an argument, deeply imbedded assumption, or philosophical problem already established in the literature.The purpose is to develop a body of literature that establishes a contrarian viewpoint." This type of literature review is primarily applied to examining prior research studies in clinical medicine and allied health fields, but it is increasingly being used in the social sciences.Theoretical Review The purpose of this form is to examine the corpus of theory that has accumulated in regard to an issue, concept, theory, phenomena.