When writing a literature review most students end up encountering challenges especially when concluding a literature review which may result to severe consequences on their grades.
b. Choose your methodology wisely. Don't be too quick in running awayfrom using a quantitative methodology because you fear the use of statistics.A qualitative approach to research can yield new and exciting understandings,but it should not be undertaken because of a fear of quantitative research.A well designed quantitative research study can often be accomplished invery clear and direct ways. A similar study of a qualitative nature usuallyrequires considerably more time and a tremendous burden to create new pathsfor analysis where previously no path had existed. Choose your methodologywisely!
Develop headings/subheadings. If your literature review is extensive, find a large table surface, and on it place post-it notes or filing cards to organize all your findings into categories. Move them around if you decide that (a) they fit better under different headings, or (b) you need to establish new topic headings.
Look at the topic sentences of each paragraph. If you were to read only these sentences, would you find that your paper presented a clear position, logically developed, from beginning to end? If, for example, you find that each paragraph begins with a researcher's name, it might indicate that, instead of evaluating and comparing the research literature from an analytical point of view, you have simply described what research has been done. This is one of the most common problems with student literature reviews. So if your paper still does not appear to be defined by a central, guiding concept, or if it does not critically analyse the literature selected, then you should make a new outline based on what you have said in each section and paragraph of the paper, and decide whether you need to add information, to delete off-topic information, or to re-structure the paper entirely.
For example, look at the following two passages and note that Student A is merely describing the literature and Student B takes a more analytical and evaluative approach, by comparing and contrasting. You can also see that this evaluative approach is well signalled by linguistic markers indicating logical connections (words such as "however," "moreover") and phrases such as "substantiates the claim that," which indicate supporting evidence and Student B's ability to synthesize knowledge.
9. Make sure your proposal has a comprehensive review of the literatureincluded. Now this idea, at first thought, may not seem to make sense.I have heard many students tell me that "This is only the proposal.I'll do a complete literature search for the dissertation. I don't wantto waste the time now." But, this is the time to do it. The rationalebehind the literature review consists of an argument with two lines of analysis: 1) this research is needed, and 2) the methodology I have chosen is most appropriate for the question that is being asked. Now, why would you want to wait? Now is the time to get informed and to learn from others who havepreceded you! If you wait until you are writing the dissertation it is toolate. You've got to do it some time so you might as well get on with itand do it now. Plus, you will probably want to add to the literature reviewwhen you're writing the final dissertation.
2. Write down your ideas. This will allow you to revisit anidea later on. Or, you can modify and change an idea. If you don't writeyour ideas they tend to be in a continual state of change and you will probablyhave the feeling that you're not going anywhere. What a great feeling itis to be able to sit down and scan the many ideas you have been thinkingabout, if they're written down.
10. With the ready availability of photocopy machines you should beable to bypass many of the hardships that previous dissertation researchershad to deal with in developing their literature review. When you read somethingthat is important to your study, photocopy the relevant articleor section. Keep your photocopies organized according to categories andsections. And, most importantly, photocopy the bibliographic citation sothat you can easily reference the material in your bibliography. Then, whenyou decide to sit down and actually write the literature review, bring out yourphotocopied sections, put them into logical and sequential order, and thenbegin your writing.
11. What is a proposal anyway? A good proposal should consist of thefirst three chapters of the dissertation. It should begin with a statementof the problem/background information (typically Chapter I of the dissertation),then move on to a review of the literature (Chapter 2), and conclude witha defining of the research methodology (Chapter 3). Of course, it shouldbe written in a future tense since it is a proposal. To turn a good proposalinto the first three chapters of the dissertation consists of changingthe tense from future tense to past tense (from "This is what I wouldlike to do" to "This is what I did") and making any changesbased on the way you actually carried out the research when compared tohow you proposed to do it. Often the intentions we state in our proposalturn out different in reality and we then have to make appropriate editorialchanges to move it from proposal to dissertation.
The conclusion is the most important part of the whole review which prompts many scholars to seek help on how to conclude a literature review.
For one to correctly write a literature review conclusion, it is important to understand the layout and also the structure of the literature review conclusion.
The conclusion summarizes all the evidence presented and shows its significance. If the review is an introduction to your own research, it highlights gaps and indicates how previous research leads to your own research project and chosen methodology. If the review is a stand-alone assignment for a course, it should suggest any practical applications of the research as well as the implications and possibilities for future research.