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ENGL 2000: English Composition

Research Strategies

Literature Reviews

What is a literature review? 

Think of a literature review as the building blocks that support your thesis statement.  A literature review is just that, a review of the significant literature published on a topic.  When you include a critical analysis of the credible evidence found in the scholarly literature on your topic you are strengthening your own research statement by providing context and tapping into the current scholarly communication. 

Basic literature reviews summarize and evaluate published research to support a thesis statement. 

Advanced literature reviews also summarize and evaluate, but with the purpose of finding a gap in the literature, or identifying a problem that has not been written about, so that you can further the discussion with your own original research. 

Steps of the literature review

  1. Select a topic
  2. Search the literature
  3. Evaluate the findings/data
  4. Critique, analyze, and/or interpret the findings

Helpful Links and Examples 

Presenting Research and Data

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