The literature review is an important part of numerous academic papers. Lots of academic assignments require a literature review to be included. It is correct about a thesis paper, dissertation, or any college research paper. It allows you to include the literature analysis in your paper. The literature review has many purposes. It is important to write it properly and organize it by the chosen approach. Thus, you need to create a literature review outline. It helps to organize the work as it should be. It is such a complicated task, so some students choose to seek help from paper helper services, which can easily prepare any assignment and structure literature review if it is needed.
The literature review allows the development of the methodology and theoretical framework. It helps to connect your research with other researchers’ works. The literature review can be a standalone academic assignment as well. In such a case, it can be written by students at college or university. It gets a few additional requirements if it’s a standalone document. You should check all the tutor’s requirements for your literature review in advance. There are a few main steps to follow to prepare a literature review outline. Learn the formatting style requirements in advance as well. It will help to organize your literature review by the book.
Literature Review Outline – Definition and Importance
Students often wonder what a literature review is and how to prepare it correctly. They tend to arrange a decent paper but often lack the skills to perform it properly. The literature review is a special work that lists the used publications, sources, and various materials. It can clarify the used sources by specific subject or timeframe. You should pay attention to your publications to prepare a review. Thus, you need to read and analyze a bunch of sources relevant to your research. You should always conduct a pre-research once having a topic assigned. Thus, you will be able to check all the sources related to your main topic, the ones you can use in your paper.
A literature review, in general, is a summary of the information about used publications. You write down the topic of the article, the author, the date of publication, and other vital details. Often, a literature review is a part of a bigger academic paper. It includes thesis papers, dissertations, complex research papers, etc. Still, it can be a standalone assignment as well. The main purpose of a literature review is to summarize, synthesize, and organize ideas discovered by other writers. Still, you do not simply list the used sources in your literature review. You show how important the previous research is for your current investigation. Moreover, you define your research results’ place among the knowledge on the topic.
Importance of a Literature Review for Writers
The literature review is a valuable part of an academic paper. It brings the following benefits for an entire research project:
- Outlines the importance of a chosen topic among the defined subject area;
- Reveals and explains the research’ background for a defined subject matter;
- Allows to figure out the main themes, concepts, principles, and key researchers in the field;
- Highlights the key points of dispute and main gaps within a topic.
A literature review brings a clear understanding of the existing theories in the field. It also helps to define the right direction in which to focus your research. It outlines the exited gaps in the knowledge on the topic. Thus, it can be used for planning your own research goals.
How to Prepare a Literature Review Outline
There are certain steps writers should follow to prepare a decent literature review outline. You need to check these steps carefully. Besides, you should always remember to keep your writings correct and precise. When you know how to prepare a literature review outline, it becomes easier to deal with your academic assignments. Also, it improves your entire research work greatly.
Step 1 –Search for Relevant and Up-To-Date Sources
You can start the search process even before you have a topic agreed upon. When you select a topic, it is right to check some relevant literature. You should only work with the topics you can find enough relevant literature on. You always look for publications related to your topic or the main research question. It is good if you are a proficient online user. It will help you to come up with proper search queries and top keywords. When you prepare a standalone literature review, the main question must be answered by using the found publications solemnly. In the case of bigger projects like a dissertation, the publications used in your work will be only a first step. You will be forced to conduct numerous research works to come up with original findings to answer your research question. You should make notes when checking relevant sources. Make sure to write down every author name and title of an article to easily find it after for your further research. Proceed with your search once creating and using keywords. Make a list of keywords based on your main research question or topic. Take some time to come up with proper keywords.
Step 2 – Evaluate and Select Sources
You cannot include just any publication in your paper. You only add and analyze the sources relevant to your research topic or main research question. The evaluation of sources is an extremely important part of your work. You need to check every material you find on the topic. Further, you must decide on its importance for your research work. When evaluating sources, outline the key concepts revealed in the publications. Pay attention to the methods, models, and key theories discovered in the publications. Once checking the presented approaches, you can come up with your innovative approach. You need to check every publication to outline the key questions you need to research. Once you know the way the topic was researched in the previous works, you can prepare your research plan. Besides, when checking the key concepts of every source, you will be able to evaluate its credibility. It is good when you take notes. It will eventually help to prepare the list of the most relevant and suitable sources.
Step 3 – Define the Main Themes, Disputes, and Gaps
In numerous academic assignments, writers need to research the topic after numerous previous research results are provided. Thus, they should figure out the only right direction for further investigation. There is no need to conduct the same research work. Thus, you must learn the other gaps of researchers’ works. They can help you to plan the direction of your personal study. First, you must identify the main themes and disputes. Once you can figure out the core concepts of the publications, you can define the existing patterns. Besides, once checking the source, you can define the conflicts and contradictions. The gaps that occur in the research can help to figure out what kind of research direction to focus on. There can be some weaknesses that must be addressed in your paper. You must define the other writer’s contributions to figure out how you can contribute to the existing knowledge on the topic.
Step 4 – Outline a Literature Review Structure
You should organize the literature review by the book. Thus, you must prepare an outline to assure the correct structure of your literature review. There are three main approaches used to organize a literature review properly:
The chronological approach remains the simplest one. You need to organize the sources chronologically. At the same time, you should avoid simply stating the sources. You still must define their key concepts, patterns, and main debates.
The thematic approach allows organizing the sources based on a certain aspect of the topic. You should organize the review into subsections. First, you need to define the key themes forever subsection. After, you should carefully list sources related to the defined themes.
The methodological approach is focused on the used research methods. You can define the sources by the way the results were accomplished. It includes quantitative and qualitative methods, empirical and theoretical, etc. Be aware, and the researchers can use a few of many methods to gain the research results.
Step 5 – Write a Literature Review by the Book
A literature review calls for a standard structure. Thus, it should include an introduction, main body part, and conclusions. A literature review requires an engaging introduction. You should define the main concepts of your review at the beginning. The body paragraphs should include the main information on sources organized chronologically, thematically, or methodologically. You can use a 5-paragraph structure when completing your review. In conclusion, it is preferable to outline your opinion on the analyzed publications and your expectations with your research. In a standalone literature review, you can pay more attention to an assigned single work of literature. When completing the dissertation literature review, you should focus on the discovered existing theories, addressed gaps, and the need to contribute new knowledge on the topic.
Tips on How to Write a Literature Review Outline
When you need to write a literature review outline, you must be very attentive to details. It is good to check the paper’s requirements and assign formatting style details in advance. It takes time to organize the literature review as it should be. Besides, there are three approaches to how to do it, including chronological, thematic, or methodological approaches.
You define the approach that suits your research goals the most. Select the topic for your research paper interesting for you and important for readers. Choose the topic for your paper that offers lots of sources to deal with.
When writing a literature review, use the following tips to succeed in your writing and research work:
- Read and evaluate every source carefully. Define the main concepts, patterns, debates, and gabs.
- Organize the sources logically and make notes.
- Select the organization approach to use in your paper. Select among chronological, thematic, or methodological approaches.
- Prepare a draft of a literature review outline.
- Edit and proofread the written literature review outline.
Working with complex research papers can be difficult. The research work itself can be quite complicated. You should always be very attentive to details. In many cases, it is always good when you know how to prepare every part of your research paper. Thus, you should learn it with judgment beforehand. A literature review is an essential part of numerous academic papers. Thus, it must be completed perfectly and due to the provided requirements.
How to Create a Good Literature Review Outline
When you prepare a dissertation, thesis, or college research paper, a literature review is obligatory. To prepare a good review, you should deal with its outline first. The outline helps to organize the review properly and it helps to include all the important information and details in a literature review.
There are three top approaches for literature review’ organization. It includes chronological, thematic, and methodological approaches. You must be very attentive to every source you use in your research paper. Check the sources and evaluate their importance for your research work. Pay attention to the information revealed in the publications. Define the key concepts, important patterns, debates, gaps, and contradictions.