Literature Review Writing

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A lit review isn’t about condemning others to prop up our own work.

A good lit review can be both engaging and informative.

Yes, they are important if you are being graded on writing one, but they are important components of research.

Here’s why: As I have written about before, it is important to read the research on any topic you are thinking of studying.

How are the other studies related to your own research? Maybe there are a handful that explores one part of the issue you are hoping to study, and another group that addresses another.

Talk about these studies together and cite them all parenthetically at the end of the sentence (Study 1, Year; Study 2, Year; Study 3, Year, etc.).

This is a way of telling readers that your study is part of an ongoing conversation in the field, and thus is worthy of study.

Maybe when you read other people’s research you find some gaps—what the other researchers examine that your study will?

Your task is to then explain why more research is needed on the topic.

Your study doesn’t need to be dramatically different from other people’s research to be worth doing.


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