Writing the Literature Review – Stage 3 Guidelines
You have located articles, read and evaluated them, and created an outline that synthesizes the conclusions of those articles. Now, in the final step, you will write a thematic synthesis. The guidelines here show you how to put the literature review together – how to flesh out the ideas in your outline – including how to use headings for organization. See Hendricks, pages 55-58, for other very helpful information and examples.
Please note that the Literature Review will appear in your Research Proposal. Your Literature Review will occur after the Statement of the Problem that you have already crafted. So, you should think about the Literature Review as the scholarly justification for your research design.
Begin with the purpose3 of your literature review – what is the purpose of your literature review? The purpose of your literature review should flow from your problem/purpose and research question. You’ll end the introduction by naming the themes of the literature, giving a sentence or two about how they are interrelated and/or how they relate to your topic in general. Give a quick summary of the trends in the themes, methodology, and findings (be brief and broad). The introduction will probably be 2 paragraphs.
Begin with an overview of characteristics of the theme (commonalities, differences, nuances) – a mini-introduction. Using APA author (date) format, discuss the findings/conclusions of each article as they relate to the theme. Give the contexts of the studies so that readers understand Discuss the importance and significance of the findings. As you move into different articles, use transition sentences and show the connections among the articles. Keep referring back to your own research topic/problem statement/research question(s), and the purpose of your review. Offer critique.
Keep repeating with themes. Limit your review to the...
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