So what is a literature review exactly?
What is a lit. review, and why do I have to write one? Literature review can serve a couple of purposes:
- It helps you focus on a particular topic and articulate for yourself what are the author's (or authors') key ideas.
- Helps you determine what is hot in a particular field.
- Helps you understand what scholars and practitioners are discussing about this topic.
- Helps you develop an understanding of how sources are in conversation with each other. (You eventually will be part of the conversation too!)
- Shows you current trends and potential gaps in scholarship.
- A lit review brings together key sources on a topic and discusses those sources in conversation with each other (synthesis). It can be a standalone piece or a part of a larger research paper.
- What is meant by “the literature”? It refers to the scholarship and research in your particular field.
- Break down of Lit Reviews Writing a Literature Review - Purdue OWL
- How to Approach a Lit Review from U. of Louisville
- Explanation of synthesis: Owl Purdue Conducting Research and Synthesizing Sources
- Sample Lit Reviews: Literature Review: Conducting & Writing - LibGuides at University of West Florida Libraries
- Literature Reviews: An Overview for Graduate Students