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Thesis Literature Review

Thesis Literature Review

Let us start this article with the definition of thesis literature review. It is a survey of scholarly articles available in books and other academic sources that are relevant to the topic that you have chosen to write about in your thesis.

The thesis literature review is not merely a regurgitation of data collected by you but involves a seamless synthesis and a summary based on your own interpretations.

Features of a substantive thesis literature review

  • It should give a new perspective to old data and/or also combine new perspectives to existing ones to create a novel idea

  • It should trace and follow the path of intellectual progression made in the particular field of study. It should also include important and major debates that took place earlier among scholars

  • You might have to explain the relevance of the materials in your thesis reviewed through a process of evaluation

  • The conclusion of your thesis would normally include gaps in the literature review leaving options open for further potential research

Purpose of a literature review in your thesis

  • To place each of the previous work done in relation to its contribution to the topic that is under consideration

  • To connect each work to all the others taken into account in the review

  • To identify new perspective and interpretations of older research

  • To identify gaps in the research work

  • To try and resolve apparent conflicts existing between different sources

  • To reveal the need for additional research

  • To justify the reason for your particular thesis

Points to consider while you present your critical analysis in your thesis literature review

Provenance – Check the author's credential and verify if his or her arguments are duly and accurately supported by evidence

Methodology – Check if the methodology used by the author to do his or her thesis were appropriate. Was the sample size sufficient? Were the outcomes effectively reported and interpreted?

Objectivity – Is the author's standpoint prejudicial or objective? Are there details in the study that are being ignored and/or interpreted different to suit the author's perspective?

Persuasiveness – Identify those aspects of the literature that have convinced you the most and convinced you the least

Value – Are the conclusions and interpretations convincing? Does the study contribute significantly in understanding the topic better?

Stages of developing a thesis literature review

  • Formulate the problem by examining the topic and identifying the component issues

  • Search for and find relevant literature

  • Evaluate the data collected and identify those studies that have significantly contributed to better understanding of the topic

  • Analyze and interpret the data in your own way

Final Notes

Completing a thesis literature review is a separate task that requires an intense reading and understanding of previous studies. It takes a lot of time and effort to come out with a substantive literature review. At Prescott Papers, we help you with literature reviews for all your thesis work. Call us for custom essays, dissertations, and other academic work that our teams of highly qualified and trained writers and editors will do for you.

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