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Writing a review of the literature for a research papers

What time span of research will you consider? Choose an area of research that is due for a review.

  1. In the case of this Educ 7001 introductory literature review, your initial purpose is to provide an overview of the topic that is of interest to you, demonstrating your understanding of key works and concepts within your chosen area of focus.
  2. Choose an area of research that is due for a review.
  3. Write the Body of the Paper Follow the plan you have developed above, making certain that each section links logically to the one before and after, and that you have divided your sections by themes or subtopics, not by reporting the work of individual theorists or researchers.
  4. Familiarize yourself with online databases see UMD library resource links below for help with this , identifying relevant databases in your field of study.

What methodologies do they use? Develop a Working Thesis Write a one or two sentence statement summarizing the conclusion you have reached about the major trends and developments you see in the research that has been done on your subject. Write the Body of the Paper Follow the plan you have developed above, making certain that each section links logically to the one before and after, and that you have divided your sections by themes or subtopics, not by reporting the work of individual theorists or researchers.

This is one of the most common problems with student literature reviews. For example, look at the following two passages and note that Student A is merely describing the literature and Student B takes a more analytical and evaluative approach, by comparing and contrasting.

  • However, you may pick any scholarly topic;
  • Refworks Import Directions for guide on how to do this from different databases;
  • Identify the literature that you will review;
  • Decide on the format in which you will take notes as you read the articles as mentioned above, you can do this in RefWorks;
  • Start with a general descriptor from the database thesaurus or one that you know is already a well defined descriptor based on past work that you have done in this field.

You can also see that this evaluative approach is well signalled by linguistic markers indicating logical connections words such as "however," "moreover" and phrases such as "substantiates the claim that," which indicate supporting evidence and Student B's ability to synthesize knowledge. Smith 2000 concludes that personal privacy in their living quarters is the most important factor in nursing home residents' perception of their autonomy.

A young researcher's guide to writing a literature review

He suggests that the physical environment in the more public spaces of the building did not have much impact on their perceptions. Neither the layout of the building, nor the activities available seem to make much difference. Jones and Johnstone make the claim that the need to control one's environment is a fundamental need of life 2001and suggest that the approach of most institutions, which is to provide total care, may be as bad as no care at all.

If people have no choices or think that they have none, they become depressed. After studying residents and staff from two intermediate care facilities in Calgary, Alberta, Smith 2000 came to the conclusion that except for the amount of personal privacy available to residents, the physical environment of these institutions had minimal if any effect on their perceptions of control autonomy.

  1. Research methods Summary of research results Step 6.
  2. Select useful quotes that you may want to include in your review. Decide on a topic It will help you considerably if your topic for your literature review is the one on which you intend to do your final M.
  3. Identify major trends or patterns. Research methods Summary of research results Step 6.
  4. The advantage of using Excel is that it enables you to sort your findings according to a variety of factors e. Since different research studies focus on different aspects of the issue being studied, each article that you read will have different emphases, strengths.
  5. You may also note that studies fall into different categories categories that you see emerging or ones that are already discussed in the literature.

However, French 1998 and Haroon 2000 found that availability of private areas is not the only aspect of the physical environment that determines residents' autonomy. Haroon interviewed 115 residents from 32 different nursing homes known to have different levels of autonomy 2000. It was found that physical structures, such as standardized furniture, heating that could not be individually regulated, and no possession of a house key for residents limited their feelings of independence.

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Moreover, Hope 2002who interviewed 225 residents from various nursing homes, substantiates the claim that characteristics of the institutional environment such as the extent of resources in the facility, as well as its location, are features which residents have indicated as being of great importance to their independence.

Revising and Editing Your Work Read your work out loud.

Guidelines for writing a literature review

That way you will be better able to identify where you need punctuation marks to signal pauses or divisions within sentences, where you have made grammatical errors, or where your sentences are unclear Since the purpose of a literature review is to demonstrate that the writer is familiar with the important professional literature on the chosen subject, check to make certain that you have covered all of the important, up-to-date, and pertinent texts.

In the sciences and some of the social sciences it is important that your literature be quite recent; this is not so important in the humanities Make certain that all of the citations and references are correct and that you are referencing in the appropriate style for your discipline.

If you are uncertain which style to use, ask your professor Check to make sure that you have not plagiarized either by failing to cite a source of information, or by using words quoted directly from a source.

Usually if you take three or more words directly from another source, you should put those words within quotation marks, and cite the page.