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Different projects involve different kinds of literature reviews with different methods and scope. And, of course, the end products can vary.
A literature review is a structured review of the published literature on a specific topic or research question designed to analyze, not just summarize, scholarly writings that are related directly to your research question. Your review critiques the literature that provides information on your topic and shows a correspondence between those writings and your research question. This guide is designed to be a general resource for those completing a literature review in their field.
The purpose of a literature review is to analyze critically a segment of a published body of knowledge through summary, classification, and comparison of prior research studies, reviews of literature, and theoretical articles.
Different types of reviews serve different purposes. Here is a short bibliography of readings about review types.
Keep in mind that a literature review defines and sets the stage for your later research. While you may take the same steps in researching your literature review, your literature review is...
A literature review is important because it: