Lit Review

A literature review is a summer of the scientific articles say about the topic or question. It is often used in APA style of writing and professors ask there students to write one to show how scholarly they are with their topic. A literature review typically has an introduction, list of references and title page. Some professors also ask the students to write an abstract for the literature review, so it is in the students best interest to ask their professor whether that is necessary or not. The note says that the literature review and annotated bib are not the same thing.

“Types of APA Papers”.  Purdue Online Writing Lab. 1995-2010. 1 March 2010. <>

  1. introduction

A literature review is not to be confused with a book review. It is a review of a scholarly article like a dissertation, books and other relevant sources on a particular topic, research and evaluation. The purpose is to offer a significant review on a published on a topic

2. components

Similar to primary research, a literature review has four stages:

  • problem formulation- What topic is being looked at and what are its components?
  • Literature search-finding relevant sources that look at the topic
  • Data evaluation-determining which data is most important to understanding the topic
  • Analysis and intrepretation-discussing findings and conclusions

Literature reviews should comprise the following elements:

  • An overview of the subject or theory under consideration and the objectives of the literature review
  • Division of works
  • Explaination of the works
  • Conclusion of the works

Some stuff that should be considered are:

  • Provenance- what is the authors credibility and are the statements supported by evidence?
  • Objectivity-is the author biased or even-handed? is all data included or did the author ignore some stuff to make there point?
  • Persuasiveness-which of the authors thesis’ convincing or not?
  • Value-are the arguements and conclusions convincing? does the work help the reader understand the topic?

3. Definiton and use/purpose

A literature review may consititute may be part of a thesis or dissertation or it could be self-contatined writings on a subject. the purpose is to:

  • Place each work so that it can be understood in the review
  • Describe the relationship to other works
  • Identify new research
  • Resolve conflicts from previous works
  • Identify previous research to prevent duplication
  • Make way for new research in the future
  • Places ones work in the context of exisitng literature

The literature review does not present new primary research.

“Write a Literature Review”. University Library. 1 March 2010. <>

Pre- and post-writing

Lit Review


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