Before you even begin to write a literature review outline, the question you need to answer although interpersonally is why? From the onset, articles concerning literature reviews have been written as part of an assignment given to students by their lecturers. The principal purpose of a literature review is to tell the readers through the provision of the data what happened. How did you arrive at some arguments or points? These are some of the functions fulfilled by a literature review. In essence, the purpose of the literature review is not to give summarized points or data but rather an in-depth explanation of them.
The review is structured and arranged in a manner that flows so well for the readers to understand. It should not only contain information directly lifted from other sources but instead, it should include the writer’s synthesis of the points. In other words, your readers should be furnished with new information which they were not privy to for your literature review outline to pass the test of professionalism.
Why? Being the major question seeking an address should transcend the reason for choosing the subject to also cover the inspirational aspects, the audience, and even the timing of the review. This, therefore, means that a lot of information from relevant and credible sources should be used to give support to the report.
Before generating an outline for a literature review, think of the following as the reasons why it is mandatory for any research work or study:
Literature reviews are considerable claims statements on their own, and that is why you assessor will ask you to address a particular subject but present an outline before then. Understanding a vivid structure and the requirements of a useful framework for a literature review is therefore very important for any person who wants to begin the process of writing. It is prudent to inquire about the areas or sources of research that you will use in addition to the sources you will need to assess. Furthermore, you will have to ask yourself if there is a need to add your sources’ critique for evaluation purposes.
In most cases, professors are good enough to provide materials they want their students to generate information from. Such materials or sources include academic journals which of course are peer-reviewed, books by credible authors and websites. Conceptualizing the visual appearance of your paper before you begin the process of writing is also very paramount.
Gathering the of the necessary information that will be used in writing the literature review outline can now begin given that you have stated the claim statement’s subject or the thesis statement. Indeed, learning institutions have got good databases that you can use to gather relevant information, including the libraries and online sources. The internet has optimized some of the search engines, and you will be able to access the data through keying in some specific words to expedite the process of searching.
If you have heard of the phrase patience pays then indeed this is the time to exercise it. The knowledge of the information source and how to extract information from requires ample time and great patience, and that is why you will not just rush through them. The common mistake that students make is that they pick words that they think are closer to their topic and apply it without understanding it well. It is advisable to take your time and not to fall victim to a quick fix. Read to understand and not just to have sufficient information with regards to the topic. A knowledge that is well embedded in your brain will go a long way in helping you develop a great review of literature outline and subsequently, an excellent paper. Some subjects are so complex that you will require more time to understand them. Never underestimate any topic, however simple they look.
After selecting the points and by extension the words that you want to use in your literature review, it is vital to carry an evaluation so that you can have information that will add more value to your work. Such an assessment must center on:
Even as you look into some of these points, remember that it is crucial to keep the information intact and no alterations should be affected.
Given the vast number of sources for extracting information in addition to huge contents within such sources, it is important to at least write all the essential notes down. Note taking will help you to remember what you would have forgotten. To make the writing process enjoyable and more manageable, you will have to accumulate important information by writing them down on sight. Never think that you will have time to go back to the sources and locate the points you wanted to appear in your literature review outline because that will amount to time wasting. The probability that you will not trace the same points is also high.
Short notes will enhance your knowledge about the subject in addition to keeping your mind active; it will also help you keep track of the source and even particular details about the author, and it will save you a lot of time not only for writing the literature review outline but also shortening the period need to submit it. If for example you find some passages interesting and you want to use them in their entirety, note-taking will help you to write down the page numbers and the topics they fall in.
Great literature reviews are created out of a list of articles chosen. Such articles are the key to giving the thesis stamen a flesh. It is for this reason that a writer must organize their work by subdividing research programs. This can be done by creating three to four categories or levels of research. First, look at the books, secondly at the academic journals, third, at the websites and lastly at other sources such as magazines and newspapers. This kind of organization will have a positive impact on the outline created because the writer will be able to compare the various sources without any problem.
This level of organization will also be important in analyzing the contents that are more relevant to your thesis statement this keeping your work more focused not only thematically but also with consideration of your readers.
The review of the literature outline being a crucial document that offers direction, cannot just contain everything or all the points including the most irrelevant ones. A good outline will essentially be a container of information that has been thoroughly analyzed. This means that the writer will not write the information they have extracted from other sources as they appear but will look into their substance and how they affect the literature review paper and the thesis statement before presenting the information to the readers.
Also, the writer will have to keenly pay attention to the details and the arguments of other writers, the consistency of the theory applied to the argument and problem proposition or solution as contained in their work. This is when a deliberate decision should be made by the writer about what to take and what to leave and how to present the data to the readers.
Give the readers an opportunity to know how you arrived at the sources by giving some clues. This should be included in the closing paragraphs of the outline.
You don’t want to present a paper that is full of errors, and for this reason, you must go through your essay to correct any mistake that might be in your literature review outline. Check for spelling mistakes and grammatical errors.
The literature review outlines are among the most important papers to write. An outline at its best describes the paper in addition to giving the readers a roadmap to the destination the article is taking them. You must remember that an outline is not the final paper, and for this reason, it must be a summary of the main points that will extensively be discussed when the final paper is written. On the same note, it must be as good as the final paper itself bearing all the critical information as an update to the final research literature review paper.
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