Do you have a literature review to write? To those who haven’t written any long content, this may seem like an intimidating task. Moreover, for those whom writing comes “naturally”, it’s only exciting if you are writing on a topic that interests you.
All in all, there’s a big difference between creative and academic writing, as any expert lit review help, will demonstrate. There are two types of a literature review that you may write as a student. The first is one that you write as a standalone assignment. Another is, as a portion of a research project.
What does it entail?
Erroneously, popular opinion among many is that a literature review is a bibliography. No, it isn’t. In the later, one lists the resources they used in the research. On the other hand, a literature review provides explanation and summary on the present state of the topic of your choice.
Compared to a research paper, a literature review doesn’t establish new arguments or make any original contributions as you would have to, in the latter. It not only presents a detailed analysis of the sources but also outlines the primary points in the review.
Writing a literature review for research paper can be daunting. If you have already gone through some of the published one, you will realise that it requires more than just good writing. The steps below guide you through this process:
• Define your Scope
Don’t be too ambitious and try to cover every aspect of your topic of interest. It will only lead to a never-ending writing process. Narrow your focus to limited scope, and refine your search.
Focus on the primary sources. The review should demonstrate your understanding of the subject matter through your focused analysis. Purpose to offer insight into the work your draw your information from.
Select a scope that’s well-defined and clear. Going through many papers may result in incoherency in driving your point home.
• Demonstrate your Understanding
Just like any other writing process, a structure provides you with guidance on what, how and where to write. Start with an outline of the review before you add any content. Once done, turn your attention to adding flesh to the lit review paper.
Keep your perfectionist tendencies at bay. It’s just a draft, and before you can submit it, you will have to revise it a few more times. Keep writing even when you feel the statement you are elaborating on is clumsy.
You can come back at it, later. The review shouldn’t just be a summary of your research. Add your voice to the conversation. Critique what needs critiquing, bring your insights, offer suggestions, and much more.
• Pay attention to trends and patterns
As you read through the sources, be vigilant. Identify any shared ideas or opinions that relate to your search query. There may also be popular ideas that may have shifted over time.
These discovered patterns will be the basis of the structure of your literature review. If you can’t find trends that are obvious, go for the organisational structure.
You also need to know when to transition from research and reading to writing. Set aside time every day to write. Have a target that you are working towards achieving every day. Take notes when you come across an important point.
Find time to revise them later. Don’t put off writing until after the research. You can do it concurrently. Be consistent in your arguments and thorough, too.