THIS PRESENTATION SESSION
Karna Bahadur Chongbang
MPhil in Education
Faculty of Education
Office for MPhil Program
What is a Literature?
Literature is a term which is used to describe written or spoken
material. Broadly speaking, literature is used to describe anything
from creative writing to more technical or scientific works.
Literature means writings and a body of literature refers to all the
published writings in a particular style on a particular subject.
In research, a body of literature is a collection of published
information and data relevant to a research question.
Literature is an authentic intellectual product, property and legacy
which contributes to the development of a certain body of
knowledge that leads to the formation of a knowledge society.
What is meant by a Literature Review?
Some definitional perspectives.
“A review of literature is a summary, analysis and interpretation of
the theoretical, conceptual and research literature related to topic or
theme.” (Anderson, 1998, p.76)
“A literature review is a written summary of journals, books and
other documents that describes the past and current state of
information on the topic of research study. A good review might also
contain other information drawn from conference papers, books and
government documents.” (Creswell, 2012,p. 80)
“A literature review is the presentation, classification and evaluation
of what other researchers have written on particular subject. A
literature review may form a part of a research thesis, or may stand
alone as a separate document.” (Txt_lit_review.pdf)
“A literature review is text written by someone to consider the
critical points of current knowledge including substantive findings,
as well as theoretical and methodological contributions to a
particular topic.” ( Wikipedia.)
Place of Literature Review in Research
Theoretical, perspectival and disciplinary ground of a
An essential preliminary task of a researcher
Continuous process during the research journey
In quantitative research: an extensive review at the
beginning, and a separate section titled “ Review of the
In qualitative research: less emphasis on literature review at
beginning, no separate section, more emphasis at the end of
the research to support and integrate the findings.
Purposes of Reviewing Literature
To convey the background of a specific field
To provide with information to the researchers to complete
To ensure the newness of the research
To avoid unnecessary duplication
To define and limit the problem
To evaluate promising research methods
To locate the agreement, disagreement and gaps in the previous
Approaches to Literature Review
Different perspectives on nature of literature review:
- employs the processes of synthesizing, summarizing and drawing
together across inter disciplinary issues
- emphasizes on developing normative conceptual framework/ value
-intends to explore literature and review strand,
- records reflection strands
Critical Theory Model:
- analyzes the literature from a particular ideological position
i.e. Feminist, Marxist etc.
- sees the materials as value laden.
Seven Steps Model of Literature Review
Step 1: Identifying research question
- A researchable research question emerges from literature review.
Step 2: Reviewing discipline styles
-Each discipline has own style for writing literature review .
Step3: Searching the literature
-Identify the key authors and their i.e. books, journals, research reports,
web sites, theses etc.
Step 4: Managing reference and avoiding plagiarism
-A review must contain accurate and consistent style of references.
-Citing reference accurately is a key way to avoid being accused of
Step 5: Critically analyzing and evaluating the information
Step 6: Synthesizing the findings
-The findings or information are compared, contrasted, combined and
synthesized into a coherent whole.
Step 7: Write the review
Guidelines for Writing Literature Review
Review APA guidelines
Cite all relevant references
Indicate why some studies are more important
Justify comments such as ‘no studies were found’
Cite separately for the inconsistent or varying results of the studies
Distinguish between research findings and other sources of
Write the argument coherently
According to Caully(1992),
Compare and contrast different authors’ view
Group authors who draw similar conclusion
Criticize the aspects of methodology
Note areas of disagreements
Highlight gaps in researches
Show how your study relates to previous studies
Show how your study relates to the literature in general
Conclude by summarizing what the literature says
Literature review is not just a shopping list,
nor a description only. Then , what may be?
Comparing and contrasting different views
Grouping the authors who have drawn similar conclusions
Criticizing the aspects of methodology
Highlighting gaps in research
Showing relation among the studies
Trends of Literature Review
Theoretical Literature Review/Framework
Empirical Literature Review
Theoretical Literature Review/Framework
Theoretical literature is ideas-based literature.
Theoretical frame work is a collection of related concepts
that guides research, determines what things one will need
to measure and/or what statistical relationship to look for.
It is used in deductive, theory-testing studies.
Theoretical reviews compare how different theories
address an issue.
Scholarly writing that helps researcher to build and
sharpen the conceptual focus.
The sources of theoretical literature review prepare the
Empirical Literature Review
Literature which contains observed data or collected
data is called empirical literature.
Empirical literature is the literatures, or previous
studies that relate or argue positively with studies,
hypothesis and variables.
It is systematic identification, location and analysis of
documents containing information related to a
research problem under investigation.
The review encompasses research question, objectives,
methodologies and findings the previous studies.
Conceptual framework is a mental construct of a
researcher based on literature review that guides
researcher’s own activities.
Emerges out from comprehensive theoretical
Occurs when a researcher links concepts from
literature to establish evidence to support the research
Reveals the variables involved in the research problem
Logical organization of information obtained from
Critical literature review provides opportunity to establish
researcher’s own expertise.
Critical/analytical literature review compares and contrasts
the theories or aspects of studies.
It justifies the linkage of research with previous studies and
further contribution to the knowledge advancement.
Presents the interactive position of dependent and
Literature is the background of any new research
Literature review is a systematic process.
Literature review is an interwoven process along with
Research question, objective, methodology and other
aspects of a research are directed by the review of
Conceptual or analytical framework of research is
derived from theoretical and empirical literature
Anonymous ( n. d.). Classic literature. Retrieved from Classclit.about.com/ o d /
literary terms /g/aa_whatsliter.htm. on April 4,2014.
Anonymous ( n. d.). Literature review. Retrieved from
En.wikipedia.org/wiki/Literature _ review. on April 4,2014.
Anonymous ( n. d.). The review of literature for research. Retrieved from
www..uncp.edu/home/…/LitReview.html on April 7, 2014.
Anonymous( n. d.). Seven steps to producing a literature review: introduction.
Retrieved from www.Librarydevelopment.group.shef.ac.u. on April 6, 2014
Anderson, G.(1998). Fundamentals of educational research( 2nd edition).Suite;
USA: Palmer Press; Taylor & Francis Group.
Birnigham City University( n. d.). How to write literature review. Center for
Academic Success ; Study Guide: Writing. Retrieved from
Library.bcu.ac.uk/learner/writingguides/1.04.htm on April 16, 2014.
Creswell, John W.(2012). Educational research. New Jersey, USA: Pearson
Kumar, R.(2005). Research methodology. New Delhi: Pearson Education
Post Presentation Session