A literature review is a summary of studies related to a particular area of research. It identifies and summarizes all the relevant research conducted on a particular topic. It is important that your literature review is focused. Therefore, you should choose a limited number of studies that are central to your topic rather than trying to collect a wide range of studies that might not be closely connected. There are many benefits to presenting literature reviews in the introduction and discussion sections of your manuscripts. However, there are differences in how you can present literature reviews in each section.
How to Get Started on a Literature Review
What Is a Literature Review?
In a thesis, a literature review is part of the introduction, but it can be a separate section as well. It is designed to provide an overview of the sources you have explored while researching a particular topic, such as books, journal articles and theses. A good literature review does not just summarize sources, it analyzes previous research showing gaps that your own research will attempt to fill. It also demonstrates to your readers how your research fits within a larger field of study. In the first step, make sure you know specifically what the assignment is and what form your literature review should take.
How to Write a Literature Review
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A literature review discusses and analyzes published information in a particular subject area. Sometimes the information covers a certain time period. A literature review is more than a summary of the sources, it has an organizational pattern that combines both summary and synthesis. A summary is a recap of the important information of the source, but a synthesis is a re-organization, or a reshuffling, of that information. It might give a new interpretation of old material or combine new with old interpretations.