Often this form is used to help establish a lack of appropriate theories or reveal that current theories are inadequate for explaining new or emerging research problems. Use the exercise of reviewing the literature to examine how authors in your discipline or area of interest have composed their literature review sections.
The unit of analysis can focus on a theoretical concept or a whole theory or framework. Problem formulation -- which topic or field is being examined and what are its component issues? Literature search -- finding materials relevant to the subject being explored. Data evaluation -- determining which literature makes a significant contribution to the understanding of the topic. Analysis and interpretation -- discussing the findings and conclusions of pertinent literature. What types of sources should I review (books, journal articles, websites; scholarly versus popular sources)? Should I summarize, synthesize, or critique sources by discussing a common theme or issue? Read them to get a sense of the types of themes you might want to look for in your own research or to identify ways to organize your final review.
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A literature review surveys books, scholarly articles, and any other sources relevant to a particular issue, area of research, or theory, and by so doing, provides a description, summary, and critical evaluation of these works in relation to the research problem being investigated.
First, there are the primary studies that researchers conduct and publish.
Second are the reviews of those studies that summarize and offer new interpretations built from and often extending beyond the primary studies.Third, there are the perceptions, conclusions, opinion, and interpretations that are shared informally that become part of the lore of field.In composing a literature review, it is important to note that it is often this third layer of knowledge that is cited as "true" even though it often has only a loose relationship to the primary studies and secondary literature reviews.Systematic Review This form consists of an overview of existing evidence pertinent to a clearly formulated research question, which uses pre-specified and standardized methods to identify and critically appraise relevant research, and to collect, report, and analyze data from the studies that are included in the review.The goal is to deliberately document, critically evaluate, and .The body of literature includes all studies that address related or identical hypotheses or research problems.A well-done integrative review meets the same standards as primary research in regard to clarity, rigor, and replication.Theoretical Review The purpose of this form is to examine the corpus of theory that has accumulated in regard to an issue, concept, theory, phenomena.The theoretical literature review helps to establish what theories already exist, the relationships between them, to what degree the existing theories have been investigated, and to develop new hypotheses to be tested. Should I provide subheadings and other background information, such as definitions and/or a history?However, note that they can also introduce problems of bias when they are used to make summary claims of the sort found in systematic reviews [see below].Integrative Review Considered a form of research that reviews, critiques, and synthesizes representative literature on a topic in an integrated way such that new frameworks and perspectives on the topic are generated.