Introduction to literature review
A written literature review is a scholarly study of the other research studies of a particular topic/ issue in the same filed of your research study. In a written literature review you are collecting the relevant studies researches that talk about the same particular topic/ issue of research and then make a summarizing and synthesizing of these collecting studies researches. Another thing about literature review is that the literature review plays two roles. The first role is that the literature review is a stand-alone literature review which is the whole document is just a literature review. The other role is that the literature review is a part of academic or research paper which some page of the document is a literature review and the other pages may be a research, thesis, dissertation or others.
Writing literature review is not just a writing process of a document, but it has many purposes and goals to make this writing. There are many purposes to write a literature review of a particular topic/ issue of research which the purposes are:
- You write a literature review to define what related research studies in a particular topic/ issue of research is taking about.
- To find a new argument/ topic which according to the same particular topic/ issue of research.
- The written literature review provides researchers a goof background knowledge in research investigation.
- Written literature review keeps you up-to-date with what current published literature reviews or researches in the same field of a particular topic/ issue of research.
- To show how your research addresses the gaps/ problem in other literature reviews on a particular topic of research.
The main idea to write an academic research paper is to develop and improve a new argument/ topic of the field of research and it may contain a literature review as a part of the research paper. But the main idea of write literature review is to summarize and synthesize existing literatures about a particular topic/ issue of research without develop a new argument/ topic in the field of research.
A written literature review has many types in which each type of literature review has it is own purpose, usage and definition. In this article you will identify seven types of written literature review which the three major type will define in this paragraph. The other literature review types will define in the next paragraph. The various types of literature review which can be listed as:
- First type: Argumentative literature review
- Second type: Historical literature review
- Third type: Systematic literature review
- Fourth type: Narrative literature review
- Fifth type: Theoretical literature review
- Sixth type: Methodological literature review
- Seventh type: Integrative literature review
First type: Argumentative literature review
Argumentative literature review is the first type of written literature review which concerned with examining literature to support or refute an argument/ research topic. Argumentative literature review type help to identify the problem/ topic which can be solved or examined during your research.
Second type: Historical literature review
Second type of written literature review is historical literature review which focus on examine the literature reviews in a specific period of time. This type of literature review examine research often in the first time a problem, topic or issue appear. The purpose of historical literature review is placing the literature research in a historical context to be familiar with updated development.
Third type: Systematic literature review
Systematic literature review is the third type of written literature review. Which provide an overview of existing evidence to formulate a research question. Systematic literature review helps you to collect and identify data on a particular topic of research.
In this paragraph, the other four types of written literature review are listed as follow:
Fourth type: Narrative literature review
Narrative literature review is the fourth type of written literature review. Narrative literature review summarizes a group of literature reviews about a particular research topic. It is good to use narrative literature review to synthesize the literature located about the particular topic of research.
Fifth type: Theoretical literature review
Fifth type of written literature review is a theoretical literature review. Theoretical literature review helps to explain what theories already exists and relationships between these theories. Also, theoretical literature review may develop new hypothesis to be tested.
Sixth type: Methodological literature review
Sixth type of written literature review is methodological literature review type. Methodological literature review focuses on the method way that used in the research to understand further steps in the research of a particular topic/ issue.
Seventh type: Integrative literature review
Seventh type of written literature review is the integrative literature review. Integrative literature review researches include collect, critiques and synthesize literatures in a particular topic in integral way. This to generate new frameworks and perspectives on the particular topic.
To write a good literature review of a particular topic/ issue of research. Here are some steps to follow when you want to write a literature review:
- Find and search for your topic
- Research for relevant resources about your topic/ issue
- Analyze founded resources
- Synthesize founded resources
- Evaluate founded resources
- Identify subjects and gaps
- Structure your outline
- Now start to write your literature review
Before starting to write a literature review, you need to make some steps to get a better writing in your literature review. Follow these four steps before start to write your own literature review:
- First step: Clarify which resources needed in your particular topic, the number of resources and if these resources need to read and evaluate it?
- Second step: Make an internet research to find models in your area of interest/ particular topic of your research.
- Third step: Specify your topic. When you make your topic narrower, it will be easy to specify the resources needed for your writing.
- Fourth step: Keep in mind if your literature review needs current resources or need to review publications in a particular period of time.
Not anybody can write a literature review, that’s because writing literature review is not easy. Writing literature review required some skills to write the literature review in a good way. So, the skills needed to write literature review are:
- You have to be able to search for relevant resources and publications in a particular research topic.
- The ability to read and ability to analyze founded resources on a particular topic.
- After reading and analyzing resources, you have to evaluate theses resources to determine which resources researches will contribute on your particular topic.
- Synthesize the resources by writing a coherent narrative of the reading and evaluating founded resources.
literature reviews are a scholarly writing which is different or not any of the following:
- A literature review is not a review book
- Literature review is not an annotated bibliography
- A literature review is a play or a short story or any type of literary review
With greetings: Al - Manara Consulting to help researchers and graduate students