Writing Literature Review

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summary of literature review writing issues
  Writing review of literature What is a review of literature ? Generally, the purpose of a review is to analyze critically a segment of a published body of knowledge through summary, classification, and comparison of prior research studies, reviews of literature, and theoretical articles. For example : Chapter 2 provides an extensive review of the literature and research related to …. The chapter will be divided into sections that include (a) history of ….., (b) importance of …., (c) current … practices, and (d) ….. My own dissertation : This chapter will try to comprehensively cover the related literature. What this chapter includes are the definition of terms and topics such as discourse, the history of discourse, discourse and ideology, gender, discourse and gender, power, the mainstream tradition of power research, the second-stream of power research, discourse and power, discourse analysis, varieties and methods of discourse analysis, discourse historical approach (DHA) in CDA, critical discourse analysis (CDA), approaches to CDA, critical linguistics, the socio-semiotic approach, the discourse-historical approach, the socio-cognitive approach, Fairclough’s CDA theory, social class, social class criteria, language use and social class, place of residence, proverbs, systemic-functional linguistics, transitivity, mood, sign, six species of signs, semiotics, a brief history of semiotics, highlights of recent semiotic research, intertextuality, recent approaches to intertextuality, literary studies, social semiotic perspectives, and educational studies of reading and writing. - A research question may  be triggered  by previous research. - The researcher   acquires  a thorough knowledge  of relevant earlier findings, ongoing research, or new theories. - Although there is no   set   rule   governing  the optimal time   frame  for a literature search or  the number   of    publications  to be included, there is general consensus that the search should be of sufficient length and breadth to include existing  pertinent seminal and landmark studies as well as current studies in the field (i.e., those conducted within the past 10   years ). - As Chapter 2 may be lengthy , it is essential to divide the chapter into as many sections and subsections as needed to logically organize the information presented. - As   Chapter   2   presents  information and conclusions  drawn by   other   researchers , citations  should be used   extensively  throughout the chapter.  - Avoid overuse of direct quotations . Including many direct quotations produces a literature review that usually lacks transitions and flow, and is difficult to read. - Do not interject any personal ideas or theories. Direct  quotations, indirect   quotations  or paraphrasing , as well as any information attributable to other researchers and individuals require   citations . Use  the format  recommended by the latest version of Publication Manual of the APA. - It is difficult   to   estimate   how   long  Chapter 2 should be. In some studies that rely on historical   and   extensive  descriptive information , Chapter 2 may be the main focus of the whole dissertation and quite   long . In general , however, Chapter 2 contains between 15 and 30 pages, although it may be as short as 10 pages or as long as 50 or more pages . Three parts of the literature review Writing the introduction : - Define or identify  the general   topic , issue, or area of concern, thus providing an appropriate context for reviewing the literature. - Point out overall trends  in what has been published about the topic; or   conflicts  in theory, methodology, evidence, and conclusions; or gaps in research and scholarship; or a single problem  or new perspective  of immediate interest. - Establish  the writer's   reason  (point of view) for reviewing the literature; explain the criteria to be used in analyzing and comparing literature and the organization of the review (sequence); and, when necessary, state why certain literature is or is not included (scope). Writing the body : - Group research studies  and other types of literature (reviews, theoretical articles, case studies, etc.) - Summarize individual studies  or articles with as much or as little detail as each merits according to its comparative importance in the literature, remembering that space (length) denotes significance. - Provide the reader with strong umbrella sentences  at beginnings of  paragraphs, signposts throughout, and brief so what summary sentences at intermediate points in the review to aid in understanding comparisons and analyses. - Key words definition    Writing the conclusion : - Summarize major contributions  of significant studies and articles to the body of knowledge under review, maintaining the focus established in the introduction. - Evaluate the current state of the art  for the body of knowledge reviewed,  pointing out major methodological flaws or gaps in research. - Conclude by providing some insight into the relationship between the central topic of the literature review  and a larger area of study such as a discipline, a scientific endeavor, or a profession.
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