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What is a Literature Review?

From the University of North Carolina: Writing Center:

"A literature review discusses published information in a particular subject area, and sometimes information in a particular subject area within a certain time period.

A literature review can be just a simple summary of the sources, but it usually has an organizational pattern and combines both summary and synthesis. A summary is a recap of the important information of the source, but a synthesis is a re-organization, or a reshuffling, of that information. It might give a new interpretation of old material or combine new with old interpretations. Or it might trace the intellectual progression of the field, including major debates. And depending on the situation, the literature review may evaluate the sources and advise the reader on the most pertinent or relevant."

Some Guides

Below are some guides to writing a literature review (Please be aware that these are guides from other institutions - if they direct you to a particular publication, do not follow the link as that link would only be for patrons of that institution)