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. LITERATURE REVIEW1 INTRODUCTION2 BEGIN WITH THE PURPOSE 3 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. Theme A 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. 1Main headings (level 1) are centered and bold-faced, but not all caps. See http://owl. english. purdue. edu/owl/resource/560/16/ 2 Secondary headings are flush with the left margin and bold-faced. 3 (a) To show why the topic is important – what is already known and why your question is therefore also important; (b) To show how best practices/strategies are enacted in the discipline, and their benefits; (c) To show gaps in the literature – how your question is unique; (d) To clarify the goals of your own research, or the research methods in your research. Jackson RES Program Appalachian State University Theme B.
Keep repeating with themes. Limit your review to the strongest two-four themes that connect to your own fieldwork topic. Conclusion Critique the reviewed literature for strengths, weaknesses, gaps, limitations. Then, go on to explicitly address how your research fits into the literature. You should elaborate the purpose of your literature review as it relates to your fieldwork – situate your fieldwork in this larger framework of the literature. Who will benefit from your fieldwork? Why should the disciplinary field of study care about your topic? What will your research question and findings potentially add to the existing literature?