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Search Abstracts and Read Full-Text Studies

1. Literature Search
2. Literature Review Process
3. Evaluating Sources




Action Research - Literature Search

2. Literature Review Process


Step 1-Keywords
Identify key words that will be useful in conducting the search for related studies. Remember that important key words may reveal themselves the reviewing phases of the research on the topic starts.

Step 2- Search
Using identified keywords, searchbooks, catalogs, the Internet, journal indexes and other sources for scholarly, peer reviewed journal articles, texts, and other materials related to the topic.

Step 3- Overplan
5-10 scholarly resources are recommended, so plan to secure 15-20 resources. Once the reading of the articles and text begins, some of them will not be as applicable to the study as initially determined based only on their titles. Eliminate those of less relevance .

Step 4- Secure copies
Make copies of most relevant articles. It is important to have the actual source material on hand .

Step 5- Develop Literature map
Create a literature map, which is a visual representation of the related literature on the topic. Some tools to consider for graphically representing this material include tree diagrams, flow charts, webs, and tables. The diagram will facilitate the ability to make logical connections among the articles to discuss in the paper.

Step 6- Summarize
Create summaries for the articles and sections of texts found most relevant. The summaries can then be woven into the final literature review. Be certain to include reference citations for each summary.

Step 7- Literature review
Draft the literature review by assembling the summaries in a thematic way so that the story is told in a logical manner. Identify how the proposed research will add to this existing knowledge base and fill gaps. Remember that every passage in a literature review must tie to a source that is cited.

Remember Literature search can be done via:  Online, Offline and from a book or journal article you found.  Here are two forms to help you as you gather your data: