A literature review is an essential part of a research project. It discusses previous research on a topic. Some reasons to conduct a literature review include:
Typically, literature reviews involve doing a comprehensive search for the literature, and can be a cyclical process involving the use of primary (original research), secondary sources (summaries of original research such as review articles, textbooks, etc.), and tertiary sources (e.g. translations).
As a starting point, to find literature reviews on your topic, search in a database related to your topic (e.g. PsycINFO) and include these keywords on your search:
"literature review" AND [your topic here]
Sample articles with literature review methodologies -
There is no single way to conduct a literature review. The focus of this research guide will be on acquiring appropriate resources
and organizing citations using citation management tools.
- Stating or formulating the problem.
- Stating the scope or focus of the reviewed material (i.e. defining clearly and measuring variables)
- Evaluation of resources
- Selection of appropriate databases, bibliographies, experts in the field
- Formulating search parameters and strategies
- Writing the literature review
- Using citation management software (e.g. EndNoteWeb) or other tools to track citations