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Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  
Writing a Review Paper
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Research may be done alone –
but it is never done in isolation.
The production of new
knowledge is fundamentally
dependent on past knowledge.
‘I not only use all the brains that I have,
but all that I can borrow.’
- Woodrow Wilson
• Research paper in peer-reviewed
journals (preferably with high impact
factor)
• Short communication
• Review articles (usually highly cited)
3	
  
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2009	
  
Which type of publication?
• Conference proceedings (often not
refereed, fewer citations)
• Popular articles (to promote your
activity)
• Letter to editor
4	
  
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2009	
  
Which type of publication?
5	
  Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2013	
  
Impact Factors for different types of article
What is a review paper?
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
A review paper is…
‘a succint review of a specific topic that
provide sufficient and in-depth
interpretation and synthesis of
published work’
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Meta-Analysis
…is a method of combining results of
several studies into a summary
conclusion, using quantitative strategies…
intended to answer a focused question.
‘A research study about research studies…
•  It provides extensive review of
previously published literature and to
put them into perspective
•  It offers critical evaluation of the
published literature
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Why is review paper very popular?
•  It creates an understanding
of the topic
•  Identify gap in knowledge
•  It provides a new approach/
perspective that would stimulate
further research
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Why is review paper very popular?
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Generate your
OWN IDEA!
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Review paper is more than annotated
bibliographies! You are not trying to list
all the material published, but to
synthesize and evaluate it so as to provide
a new approach or stimulate further
research
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
‘…a collection of all the
scholarly writings on a topic.’
What is literature?
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Study
1
Study
2
Study
10
Study
X
ORIGINA
L WORK
ORIGIN
AL
WORK
Your own idea will connect to the
developing knowledge network in the
field
What is literature review?
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
‘…a systematic…method for
identifying, evaluating and interpreting
the…work produced by researchers,
scholars and practitioners.’
What is literature review?
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
What is literature review?
Literature is about telling a
story…kind of a chain story
where each writer starts with a
partial story created previously
by others and expand on it…the
existing literature is the story so
far…
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2013	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Before deciding to write a review
paper, ask the following questions:
Do I know my stuff
sufficiently?
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2013	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Before deciding to write a review
paper, ask the following questions:
Which journal to
publish by review?
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2013	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Before deciding to write a review
paper, ask the following questions:
Would it be
considered at all?
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
•  Do a thorough literature search
•  Consult the Journal Editor
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Write a convincing
cover letter & explain…
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Consulting with the Journal Editor
•  Rationale why you want to write about the
topic;
•  Explain how you would handle the subject
matter;
•  Explain why you are qualified to write on the
proposed topic;
•  Estimated length (incl. no of figures & tables);
•  Estimated date of completion.
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Approach to doing
a literature review
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
READ PUBLISHED WORK SYNTHESIS
Study a wide range of
print- and web-based
materials.
Creation of an
“integrated whole”
– Coherent
argument of the
topic that you are
reviewing.
INTERPRETATION
Explain the
significance & interpret
the evidence
presented in each
piece of literature – not
simply listing what
others have written.
How to review the literature?
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
The key is…be selective in
what you read – or else
you’ll get drown in too
much information!
It is impossible to read all the research ever
published in your area…
Approach to doing a literature review
26	
  
Filtering & sorting the essentials
from the irrelevant…
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
See the wood for the trees…
Image	
  source:	
  hAp://	
  sciencebhakta.wordpress.com	
  
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
The range of literature to explore
•  Background material which is of broadly
relevance to your topic
•  Literature and research studies which
address issues that are closely related
to your topic
•  Literature which is directly related to
your topic
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Searching & reading strategy (example)
Industrial
application of
gelatin
Halal gelatin
alternatives in
industry
Halal gelatin in
food industry
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Searching & reading strategy
Field specific papers
Quantity of relevant publications
Less
specific, less
recent
More
specific,
more recent
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Components of lit. review…
§ Background information
•  Introduce topic
•  Describe scope &
organization
•  Review past & present
literature
•  Clarify purpose
Hmm…where do I look for
resources for my
literature review?
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Academic libraries
Public libraries
National libraries
Museums
Archives
Special collections
Commercial organizations
Commercial databases
(SCOPUS, Web of
knowledge, Springerlink)
Literature sources
Sources & organizations
providing publications
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Library catalogues
Subject indexes
Subject abstracts
Bibliographies
Encyclopedia
Internet directories
Internet search engines
Tools for searching
published works & data
Literature sources
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Sources where research &
information is published
Textbooks
Articles
Theses
Government publications
Legal & professional
publications
Trade literature
Conference papers
Monographs
Statistics
Literature sources
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Organizing information
Summarize, tabulate
Use bibliographic
software (Endnote)
Managing the literature
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Analyzing information
Note taking
Summarizing the key
findings
Extracting critical facts/
arguments
Examine evidence
Understand interpretation
Analyzing & “digesting’ the literature
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Reading critically & analytically
Definitions
Problem
Theory
Hypothesis
Techniques
Interpretations
Concepts
Arguments
Standpoint
Evidence
Perspective
Styles
Justification
Ways of
thinking
Events
Motives
Politics
Conclusions
Things to extract from each piece of reading material
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Skills for “digesting” the literature
Select, differentiate,
break up
Integrate, combine,
formulate, reorganize
Understand,
distinguish, explain
Define, classify, describe
Dissecting data into their
constituent part.
Rearranging the elements
derived from analysis to
identify relationship.
Interpreting & distinguishing
between different types of
data , theory & argument to
describe the substance of an
idea
Describing the principles, uses,
& function of rules, method,
etc.
ANALYSIS
SYNTHESIS
COMPREHENSION
KNOWLEDGE
Adapted from Hart, 1998
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Components of lit. review…
§ Theory
•  All research has a precedent
•  Integrate key points & make
appropriate inferences
•  Be aware of relationship to
your topic
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Components of lit. review…
§ Critical appraisal/synthesis
•  Not jus a list of the work of
others
•  Identify issues highlighted
•  Highlight differences &
similarities
•  Identify consensus
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
§ A citing of all key studies in the
subject area
§ A selection & synthesis of
existing arguments to form a new
perspective
Any critical review should incorporate…
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Any critical review should incorporate…
§ An assessment of the strengths
& weaknesses of some of the
theories
§ A clear understanding of the
topic
Abd	
  Karim	
  Alias@2010	
  [akarim@usm.my]	
  
Length of review
§ Comprehensive review (up to
12,000 words)
§ Concise review (approx. 5,000
words)
Writing a Review Paper

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Writing a Review Paper

  • 1. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010   Writing a Review Paper
  • 2. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Research may be done alone – but it is never done in isolation. The production of new knowledge is fundamentally dependent on past knowledge. ‘I not only use all the brains that I have, but all that I can borrow.’ - Woodrow Wilson
  • 3. • Research paper in peer-reviewed journals (preferably with high impact factor) • Short communication • Review articles (usually highly cited) 3   Abd  Karim  Alias@2009   Which type of publication?
  • 4. • Conference proceedings (often not refereed, fewer citations) • Popular articles (to promote your activity) • Letter to editor 4   Abd  Karim  Alias@2009   Which type of publication?
  • 5. 5  Abd  Karim  Alias@2013   Impact Factors for different types of article
  • 6. What is a review paper? Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]  
  • 7. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   A review paper is… ‘a succint review of a specific topic that provide sufficient and in-depth interpretation and synthesis of published work’
  • 8. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Meta-Analysis …is a method of combining results of several studies into a summary conclusion, using quantitative strategies… intended to answer a focused question. ‘A research study about research studies…
  • 9. •  It provides extensive review of previously published literature and to put them into perspective •  It offers critical evaluation of the published literature Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Why is review paper very popular?
  • 10. •  It creates an understanding of the topic •  Identify gap in knowledge •  It provides a new approach/ perspective that would stimulate further research Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Why is review paper very popular?
  • 11. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Generate your OWN IDEA!
  • 12. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Review paper is more than annotated bibliographies! You are not trying to list all the material published, but to synthesize and evaluate it so as to provide a new approach or stimulate further research
  • 13. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   ‘…a collection of all the scholarly writings on a topic.’ What is literature?
  • 14. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Study 1 Study 2 Study 10 Study X ORIGINA L WORK ORIGIN AL WORK Your own idea will connect to the developing knowledge network in the field What is literature review?
  • 15. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   ‘…a systematic…method for identifying, evaluating and interpreting the…work produced by researchers, scholars and practitioners.’ What is literature review?
  • 16. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   What is literature review? Literature is about telling a story…kind of a chain story where each writer starts with a partial story created previously by others and expand on it…the existing literature is the story so far…
  • 17. Abd  Karim  Alias@2013  [akarim@usm.my]   Before deciding to write a review paper, ask the following questions: Do I know my stuff sufficiently?
  • 18. Abd  Karim  Alias@2013  [akarim@usm.my]   Before deciding to write a review paper, ask the following questions: Which journal to publish by review?
  • 19. Abd  Karim  Alias@2013  [akarim@usm.my]   Before deciding to write a review paper, ask the following questions: Would it be considered at all?
  • 20. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   •  Do a thorough literature search •  Consult the Journal Editor
  • 21. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Write a convincing cover letter & explain…
  • 22. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Consulting with the Journal Editor •  Rationale why you want to write about the topic; •  Explain how you would handle the subject matter; •  Explain why you are qualified to write on the proposed topic; •  Estimated length (incl. no of figures & tables); •  Estimated date of completion.
  • 23. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Approach to doing a literature review
  • 24. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   READ PUBLISHED WORK SYNTHESIS Study a wide range of print- and web-based materials. Creation of an “integrated whole” – Coherent argument of the topic that you are reviewing. INTERPRETATION Explain the significance & interpret the evidence presented in each piece of literature – not simply listing what others have written. How to review the literature?
  • 25. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   The key is…be selective in what you read – or else you’ll get drown in too much information! It is impossible to read all the research ever published in your area… Approach to doing a literature review
  • 26. 26   Filtering & sorting the essentials from the irrelevant… Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   See the wood for the trees… Image  source:  hAp://  sciencebhakta.wordpress.com  
  • 27. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   The range of literature to explore •  Background material which is of broadly relevance to your topic •  Literature and research studies which address issues that are closely related to your topic •  Literature which is directly related to your topic
  • 28. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Searching & reading strategy (example) Industrial application of gelatin Halal gelatin alternatives in industry Halal gelatin in food industry
  • 29. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Searching & reading strategy Field specific papers Quantity of relevant publications Less specific, less recent More specific, more recent
  • 30. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Components of lit. review… § Background information •  Introduce topic •  Describe scope & organization •  Review past & present literature •  Clarify purpose
  • 31. Hmm…where do I look for resources for my literature review? Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]  
  • 32. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Academic libraries Public libraries National libraries Museums Archives Special collections Commercial organizations Commercial databases (SCOPUS, Web of knowledge, Springerlink) Literature sources Sources & organizations providing publications
  • 33. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Library catalogues Subject indexes Subject abstracts Bibliographies Encyclopedia Internet directories Internet search engines Tools for searching published works & data Literature sources
  • 34. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Sources where research & information is published Textbooks Articles Theses Government publications Legal & professional publications Trade literature Conference papers Monographs Statistics Literature sources
  • 35. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Organizing information Summarize, tabulate Use bibliographic software (Endnote) Managing the literature
  • 36. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Analyzing information Note taking Summarizing the key findings Extracting critical facts/ arguments Examine evidence Understand interpretation Analyzing & “digesting’ the literature
  • 37. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Reading critically & analytically Definitions Problem Theory Hypothesis Techniques Interpretations Concepts Arguments Standpoint Evidence Perspective Styles Justification Ways of thinking Events Motives Politics Conclusions Things to extract from each piece of reading material
  • 38. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Skills for “digesting” the literature Select, differentiate, break up Integrate, combine, formulate, reorganize Understand, distinguish, explain Define, classify, describe Dissecting data into their constituent part. Rearranging the elements derived from analysis to identify relationship. Interpreting & distinguishing between different types of data , theory & argument to describe the substance of an idea Describing the principles, uses, & function of rules, method, etc. ANALYSIS SYNTHESIS COMPREHENSION KNOWLEDGE Adapted from Hart, 1998
  • 39. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Components of lit. review… § Theory •  All research has a precedent •  Integrate key points & make appropriate inferences •  Be aware of relationship to your topic
  • 40. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Components of lit. review… § Critical appraisal/synthesis •  Not jus a list of the work of others •  Identify issues highlighted •  Highlight differences & similarities •  Identify consensus
  • 41. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   § A citing of all key studies in the subject area § A selection & synthesis of existing arguments to form a new perspective Any critical review should incorporate…
  • 42. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Any critical review should incorporate… § An assessment of the strengths & weaknesses of some of the theories § A clear understanding of the topic
  • 43. Abd  Karim  Alias@2010  [akarim@usm.my]   Length of review § Comprehensive review (up to 12,000 words) § Concise review (approx. 5,000 words)