1. Selecting your topic2. Setting the topic in context3. Looking at information sources4. Using information sources5. Getting the information6. Organising information (information management)7. Positioning the literature review8. Writing the literature review
This is the "What is a literature review?" page of the "Literature Review Tutorial" guide.
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Literature Review Tutorial  

These pages have been developed by staff at CQUniversity to help postgraduate students conceptualize, research and write a literature review. The pages are intended as a guide and it is the responsibility of the supervisor to give advice.
Last Updated: Jul 4, 2014 URL: http://libguides.library.cqu.edu.au/litreview Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts

What is a literature review? Print Page
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Video Clips

Select the images to listen to researchers speak about what a literature review is:

*Note: Please use Internet Explorer to view videos

photo of Associate Professor Steve McKillup,

Associate Professor Steve McKillup

 

photo of Dr Barbara Webster,

Dr Barbara Webster

 

photo of Dr Tony Ward,

Dr Tony Ward

 

 

Definition

A literature review is an evaluative report of information found in the literature related to your selected area of study.  The review should describe, summarise, evaluate and clarify this literature.  It should give a theoretical base for the research and help you (the author) determine the nature of your research. Works which are irrelevant should be discarded and those which are peripheral should be looked at critically.

A literature review is more than the search for information, and goes beyond being a descriptive annotated bibliography. All works included in the review must be read, evaluated and analysed (which you would do for an annotated bibliography), but relationships between the literature must also be identified and articulated, in relation to your field of research.

"In writing the literature review, the purpose is to convey to the reader what knowledge and ideas have been established on a topic, and what their strengths and weaknesses are. The literature review must be defined by a guiding concept (eg. your research objective, the problem or issue you are discussing, or your argumentative thesis). It is not just a descriptive list of the material available, or a set of summaries.(http://www.utoronto.ca/writing/litrev.html)

 

Books available at CQUniLIBRARY

A selection of books available at CQUniLIBRARY to assist you with preparing a literature review:

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