A literature review is a type of academic writing that provides an overview of existing knowledge in a particular field of research. A good literature review summarises, analyses, evaluates and synthesises the relevant literature within what is literature review essay particular field of research.
It illuminates how knowledge has evolved within the field, highlighting what has already been done, what is generally accepted, what is emerging and what is the current state of thinking on the topic.
Additionally, literature reviews identify the gaps in the current knowledge - that is, uninvestigated or under-researched areas. Whether the literature review is short or extended, similar structural and linguistic features apply.
However, your literature review does not what is literature review essay to be inclusive of every article and book that has been written on your topic because that will be too broad.
Rather, it should include whst key sources highlighting the main debates, trends and gaps in your specific research area. A review of literature presents much more than a summary of relevant sources. The act of reviewing involves evaluating individual sources as well as synthesising these sources in order to develop your own research project.
What is a review of the literature?
Literature reviews can form part of a research project or proposal, or they what is literature review essay be stand-alone extended documents. A literature review that is part of a course assignment might be of to words, while a literature review that is presented as a journal article might be in excess of what is literature review essay. Literature reviews exist within different types of scholarly works. Short literature reviews can be presented in journal articles, book chapters, or coursework assignments to set the background of the research topic.
The focus of a literature review in a graduate research thesis is to identify gaps and argue for the need for further research.
Depending on the purpose of the writer and the context in which the literature review will be presented, a selective or comprehensive approach may be taken.
In the selective approacha single or limited number of sources are reviewed e. This relates to shorter literature reviews. A comprehensive approach requires the review of numerous sources e.]