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You need to demonstrate to your reader that you are examining your sources with a critical approach, and not just believing them automatically.Your interpretation of each piece of evidence is just that: an interpretation.This Study Guide explains why literature reviews are needed, and how they can be conducted and reported.
They will ask questions such as: These are questions that you will already probably be asking yourself.
You will also need to be ready to answer them in a viva if you will be having one. are particularly relevant to the process of critical review.
Your interpretation may be self-evident to you, but it may not be to everyone else.
You need to critique your own interpretation of material, and to present your rationale, so that your reader can follow your thinking.
If you attend a conference or workshop with a wider group of people, perhaps from other universities, you can take the opportunity to ask other attendees for recommendations of articles or books relevant to your area of research.
Each department or school has assigned to it a specialist Information Librarian.The ability to review, and to report on relevant literature is a key academic skill.A literature review: To some extent, particularly with postgraduate research, the literature review can become a project in itself.You can find the contact details for the Information Librarian for your own area via the Library web pages.This person can help you identify relevant sources, and create effective electronic searches: anything on your research area is a good start. You may also want to make a clear decision about whether to start with a very narrow focus and work outwards, or to start wide before focussing in. It is a good idea to decide your strategy on this, rather than drifting into one or the other.This will then provide you with a long reference list, and some evaluation of the references it contains.No electronic literature search can be 100% comprehensive, as the match between search terms and the content of articles will never be perfect.Guidance will be available via your own department or school and via the relevant Information Librarian.There may also be key sources of publications for your subject that are accessible electronically, such as collections of policy documents, standards, archive material, videos, and audio-recordings.It can also establish a framework within which to present and analyse the findings.After reading your literature review, it should be clear to the reader that you have up-to-date awareness of the relevant work of others, and that the research question you are asking is relevant. Be wary of saying that your research will solve a problem, or that it will change practice.