Literature Review Help: 7 Tips on Writing an Outstanding Thesis

What is a Literature Review?

A literature review is a compilation of scholarly sources that offers an in-depth analysis of a specific subject. The section enlists all relevant and recent publications concerning the topic under study. It looks into what other researchers found out about the related subject. The literature review contains the following components:

  • Description of researches
  • Summarization of key takeaways
  • Evaluation of research gap

What Makes a Literature Review Different from an Annotated Bibliography?

An annotated bibliography contains a list of sources used when carrying out research. On the other hand, a literature review represents an overview of the topic under study. A review is longer while assessing previous publications' application in contributing to the current study topic.

Tips for Writing Literature Review for Thesis

There is a step by step approach when it comes to crafting the literature review. Here is a description of the steps involved:

Defining Goal

What do you hope to achieve with the thesis? Do you want to add new information? Do you have a solution to a current issue? In case you are writing an argumentative thesis, you should have the backing of a factual thesis statement. In case it is an evaluation of theories, it should have a hypothesis. 

Define Scope of Study

Before starting the research process, you need to read through many publications related to your subject area. The review should include filtered and relevant information to maintain the focus of the study. The review should have a well-defined scope that offers in-depth analysis from the works drawn from.

Stating Objectives

The main aim of the study drives the core of the research. Objectives help in maintaining the focus of the study. It prevents from having a broad review that covers irrelevant aspects of your research.

Carrying Research

You should have all sources that touch on your topic of study. Evaluate the stance and position of the research regarding the subject. It is recommended to use information from authoritative sources. The research should touch on your specific study area.

Summarizing Relevance

Apart from deducing information from other publications, it is vital to show how the publication is relevant to your study topic. Create a link between the sources and current information. Use the discussion as a tool for establishing the relevance of the study.

Create Review

While carrying out research, you are bound to run into various ideas to include in the review. Develop these ideas as you establish the study. Some ideas will fade away in the process, while other new ideas will form. Learn to develop a naturally flowing study that assesses the validity and application of this information.

Add Reference

In writing your review, you will have to include the references to the authors of the publications used. Furthermore, you will need to include all the citations you have added to your research. There are various individual styles you can use, including:

  1. APA
  2. MLA 
  3. Chicago
  4. Havard

The literature review should not only comprise of too much information only. It should also encompass the synthesis of such information. Add some fresh pairs of eyes to determine the flow of ideas in your review.

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