Writing the literature review for a dissertation

Step Four: Code the literature: Get out a pair of scissors and cut each excerpt out.

literature review outline

How might your research add to this understanding, or challenge existing theories and beliefs? These subsections might echo areas of the subject you will later visit in your dissertation itself. Not quite. It can also establish a framework within which to present and analyse the findings.

literature review structure

Writing it up The task of shaping a logical and effective report of a literature review is undeniably challenging. Researchers investigate research problems in many divergent ways and the literature available on any given subject is extremely broad.

How to write a literature review for dummies

In any case, when considering your inclusion and exclusion criteria, it is important to ask the following of each article: is this relevant, suitable, and useful? What you include in each depends on the objective of your literature review. You can then begin your process of evaluating the quality and relevance of what you read, and this can guide you to more focussed further reading. Explicitly articulate the rationale behind the theoretical aspect to your own findings and the position you have reached by the end of the literature review. What geographical area? Not quite. A good, well-explained structure is also a huge help to the reader. Resolve conflicts among seemingly contradictory previous studies.

Keep it simple Keep your topic as narrowed down as possible. The literature review often appears near the start of your dissertation, and is a key part of your overall dissertation structure.

Extended literature review dissertation

This can mean that you get mixed up over what is an exact quote, and what you have written in your own words; or over what was an idea of your own that you jotted down, or an idea from some text. You can find the contact details for the Information Librarian for your own area via the Library web pages. How does the publication contribute to your understanding of the topic? What are the key concepts and how are they defined? Blaxter et al. Staff and students in your area can be good sources of ideas about where to look for relevant literature. As the example above suggests, a dissertation literature review must be written using a formal and academic style. The body of your research may also include additional sections that do not necessarily form a part of its organisational structure.
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