How to write literature review

the check list:

Selection of sources:

  • Have you indicated the purpose of the review?
  • Are the parameters of the review reasonable?
  • Why did you include some of the literature and exclude others?
  • Have you emphasised recent developments?
  • Is the literature you have selected relevant?

Critical Evaluation of the Literature:

  • Have you organised your material according to issues?
  • Is there a logic to the way you organised the material?
  • Does the amount of detail included on an issue relate to its importance?
  • Have you been sufficiently critical of design and methodological issues?
  • Have you indicated when results were conflicting or inconclusive and discussed possible reasons?
  • Have you indicated the relevance of each reference to your research?

According to Caulley (1992) of La Trobe University, the literature review should:
❖ compare and contrast different authors’ views on an issue

  • group authors who draw similar conclusions
  • criticise aspects of methodology
  • note areas in which authors are in disagreement
  • highlight exemplary studies
  • highlight gaps in research
  • show how your study relates to previous studies
  • show how your study relates to the literature in general
  • conclude by summarising what the literature says
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