Recommendations for a Complete Literature Review. Part 1

An excellent literature review not only highlights principle issues in your field but also provides new perspectives on the research topic. Careful skimming of literature introduces the readers to relevant terminologies frequently used in context of their work. Literature review assists in recognizing related research findings and relevant theories. Furthermore, it aids in pinpointing the methodologies that one may adopt for research.

5 Step To Begin the Literature Review              

There are five steps that one should follow before preparing to conduct the literature review:

  1. Identify all the literature relevant to your topic of interest. Explore all the different types of literature including theoretical literature, applied literature, literature that talks about research methods, or a combination thereof.
  2. Using multiple keywords and strategies capture the most accurate and relevant data. Conduct an extensive search in multi-disciplinary databases.
  3. Group your findings into a detailed summary of what is known and what needs to be explored.
  4. Identify existing gaps or any unresolved issues.
  5. Formulate broad questions that warrant further research

How to Best Critique a Research paper

For extracting maximum information from a research paper, researchers must ask the following questions!

  1. Has the author formulated an appropriate research question based on the problem/issue?
  2. Is the research question clearly defined in terms of its scope and relevance?
  3. Was there an alternative or better perspective to approach the research question?
  4. What is the author’s orientation towards the research problem – is it a critical analysis or interpretation based?
  5. Has the author extensively evaluated the literature considering both latest and relevant articles?
  6. How has the author defined the basic components (population, interventions, outcomes) of the study? Are the measurements valid, accurate and statistically significant? Are the conclusions based accurate interpretations of the data?
  7. Is there an objective based, unbiased reasoning provided for the problem statement or is the author merely attempting to prove his/her preconceived beliefs and opinions?
  8. How does this article contribute to your understanding of the research problem?
  9. What are the strengths, limitations and shortcomings of the study?



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