Finding Research

Why do we undertake a literature review

  • To identify key authors
  • To identify keywords
    • Use these keywords throughout your report
  • To identify research trends
  • To identify stable research findings

What to include in a literature review

  • How other people have tackled your problem
  • How their research approach supports\ informs your approach
  • Highlight issues in research approaches and how they influence your approach
  • Highlight specific knowledge to your topic


Steps in your literature search

Start with a textbook as they

  • Give a clear overview of the topic
  • Identify keywords
  • Identify stable findings
  • Identify key authors
  • Identify key papers

Scholar search engines

The title

  • Is it related to the topic which you are researching
  • It could indicate a possible approach (experiment design)
  • Will help you to formulate your research title

Reading the abstract

  • Indicates the researcher(s) approach
  • Identifies other key authors
  • Identifies arguments or supports a theory
  • Indicates results
  • Indicates if it is worth spending time reading the whole paper
  • Identifies a list of keywords

Using your papers

  • Highlight key\ points to make them quicker to find, when you are looking for them later
  • Add comments, thoughts, and questions as you read
  • Alternatively, you could
    • Create a word document and break the topic into headings
    • Copy and paste quotes under each heading (include a hyperlink to the paper)
    • This will produce a semi-structure literature review
    • It also provides a bank of quotes which can be quickly accessed and use at a later date


What Paper To Use – Dr Rugg

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