How to Conduct a literature Research?

Conducting literature research is not a collection of loosely related studies in a field but instead represents background and research developments related to a specific research question and while at this you have to make sure your research questions are not too broad or too narrow and you must provide an excellent guide to discuss the topic with your professor if you have the opportunity.

Sometimes your chosen topic may be too broad. To find direction, try limiting the scope and purpose of the research by identifying the concepts you wish to explore. I hope the effective steps that will be listed below help you in your literature research.


1. Decide on Your Areas of Research

Consider your specific area of study, try to think of ways you can make your subject more specific and one way to do that is by stating your topic as a question. For example, think about what interests you before you begin to search for articles or books, decide beforehand what areas you are going to research.

When it comes to websites you can visit in order to explore the possibilities and do some research, a friend told me is one of those you can visit, to get ideas on how to proceed. Even if you come across fascinating books in other areas.


2. Search for Literature

Try to brainstorm, explore barriers to higher education for undocumented students.

Conduct a comprehensive bibliographic search of books and articles in your area.

Write down the searches you conduct in each database so that you may duplicate them if you need to use them later. Use the bibliographies and references of research studies you find to locate others.

Find books in the library that are relevant and check them out.

Set a specific time frame for how long you will search and define your source selection criteria (Review the abstracts of research studies carefully. This will save you time.


3. Evaluate and Synthesize the Studies

This exercise requires a methodology on the part of researchers, who must ensure enhanced objectivity and avoid biases or mistakes.

The type of data that should be recorded mainly depends on the initial research questions.

As you search and find citations and/or abstracts for specific books, articles, or websites, consider the following established criteria for evaluating the quality of books, journal articles, and websites, results, conflicting theories, testing procedures, etc.

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4. Locate Current Research

Journal articles are a great resource for learning about cutting-edge research in your area.

Indexes and databases allow you to search across many journal publishers at once to find citations, abstracts, and full-text articles for your research.


5. Gathering More Information

You have to explore your research Idea by searching through the Classic Catalog.

Note where the item is located in the library and the circulation status. When you find a good book, scan the bibliography for additional sources.

Look for book-length bibliographies, literature reviews, and annual reviews in your research area; this type of resource lists hundreds of books and articles in one subject area.


6. Literature Review

You have to review the abstracts carefully and keep careful notes so that you can track your thought processes during the research process.

Don’t forget to include the citations as you write, so as not to lose track of who said what.

Repeat this for each section of your literature review. It may be a bit challenging unless you are already familiar with the literature.

It is always hard to figure out how much you need to read for deep meaning.

When conducting literature research, reviews for articles, or books, this system should work, especially when you are writing in a field with which you are already familiar.

Scheme through the important professional literature on the chosen subject and check to make certain that you have covered all of the important, up-to-date, and pertinent texts. In the sciences and some of the social sciences, it is important that your literature be quite recent; this is not so important in the humanities.

Make certain that all of the citations and references are correct and that you are referencing in the appropriate style for your discipline.

If you are uncertain which style to use, ask your professor.

The text should be written in a clear and concise academic style; it should not be descriptive or use the language of everyday speech. There should be no grammatical or spelling errors and sentences should flow smoothly and logically.

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Learn more about conducting literature research.

From Science to Literature: An Interview with Professor Laura Otis

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