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Spring 2008 Teresa Cortez The University of Texas at El Paso Spring 2008 The Literature Review.

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Presentation on theme: "Spring 2008 Teresa Cortez The University of Texas at El Paso Spring 2008 The Literature Review."— Presentation transcript:

1 Spring 2008 Teresa Cortez The University of Texas at El Paso Spring 2008 The Literature Review

2 Spring 2008 Systematic identification, location, and analysis of documents Literature Review

3 Spring 2008 Literature Review Goals 1.Demonstrate familiarity with a body of knowledge—establishes your credibility. 2.Show the path of previous research—how your current project is linked to it. 3.Places your research project in a context.

4 Spring 2008 4.Integrate and summarize what is known— pulls together and synthesizes different results. 5.Indicates direction for future research. 6.Learn from others and stimulate new ideas. Literature Review Goals (cont.)

5 Spring 2008 7.Identifies blind alleys and hypotheses for replication. 8.Divulges procedures, techniques, research designs worth copying. 9.Points out areas where researchers agree, where they disagree, and where major questions remain. Literature Review Goals (cont.)

6 Spring 2008 Why?? –Assists in formulating research question –Points out possible research strategies –Points out possible measuring devices –Introduces you to significant research personalities –May replicate or extend previous study –May find inconsistencies in studies Literature Review

7 Spring 2008 –May question applicability of findings to different samples, cultures, regions –Study may already have been conducted –Provides a context-rationale for study –Facilitates interpretation of study results –Studies already conducted related to your research question –Provides suggestions about what studies need to still be conducted Literature Review (cont.)

8 Spring 2008 Process of conducting a literature search: 1.Analyze the research problem or area of concern 2.Determine the type of search 3.Select the reference service (Databases such as EBSCO, ERIC, JSTOR) 4.Select the descriptors and key terms 5.Conduct the search 6.Locate the references

9 Spring 2008 Always keep your research problem central Discuss the documents you have read Have a plan of ATTACK Begin discussion like inverted pyramid Broad topic to specific nature of research proposal Preparing to Write

10 Spring 2008 Headings and subheadings Strive for clarity Emphasize relatedness between research question and literature reviewed Integrate-integrate-integrate Preparing to Write (cont.)

11 Spring 2008 Avoid quotes Paraphrase, paraphrase, paraphrase At the end of the literature review section, summarize your findings Answers “What does all this mean?” Preparing to write (cont.)

12 Spring 2008 Make an outline Main topics ordered Subtopics under each main topic Analyze references with outline Read most recent ones first, oldest last Seminal (influential, decisive, shaping) works are very important Preparing to write (cont.)

13 Spring 2008 Read abstracts first--is article appropriate? Sort references where fit in outline Use data-based, empirical (experimental, observed) studies Opinion pieces, descriptive research helpful in introduction--set stage Preparing to write (cont.)

14 Spring 2008 Do not ignore studies that differ from majority or personal bias. Related literature review is NOT a series of abstracts or annotations Integrate-integrate-integrate Not a literary production---be clear and concise Preparing to write (cont.)

15 Spring 2008

16 Sources Journal articles, journal reviews, ERIC papers, monographs, online materials, books, periodicals, abstracts, government documents, and dissertations Includes: theoretical discussions, reviews of literature, philosophical papers, descriptions and evaluations of current practices, and empirical research

17 Spring 2008 Primary Source -- description of study written by person who conducted it. –Primary sources are the original studies or writings by a theorist or researcher, which are found by using indexes to journals, educational documents, government documents, and dissertations. Use Primary Sources to the most extent possible. Source Guideline

18 Spring 2008 Secondary Source -- much briefer description of study written by other than original researcher –Secondary sources are syntheses of the research-based knowledge on a topic and are usually articles in general and specialized educational journals, annuals, yearbooks, encyclopedias, or books. Use Primary Sources to the most extent possible. Source Guideline

19 Spring 2008 Judging Literature Review A lit review is judged adequate in the context of the proposal. A lit review is NOT judged by its length nor by the number of citations. The quality of a lit review is judged according to whether it increases the understanding of the status of knowledge of the problem and provides a rationale for the study.

20 Spring 2008 Literature Review Some of questions the Review of Literature can answer –What are the origins and definitions of the topic? –What are the key sources? –What the key theories, concepts, and ideas? –What are the major issues and debates about the topic? –What are the political standpoints?

21 Spring 2008 Some questions the Review of Literature can answer (cont.) –How is knowledge on the topic structured and organized? –What are the main questions and problems that have been addressed to date? –How have approaches to these questions increased our understanding and knowledge?

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