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What Is A Literature Review? Tips On Conducting A Review Of Literature

BČ, CMA, LJ, UL, JS and MV have contributed to collection and interpretation of the data, critically reviewed and revised the manuscript and approved the final manuscript as submitted. JD, LD, AH, HK critically reviewed and revised the manuscript and approved the final manuscript as submitted. Royal College of Physicians, National Council for Palliative Care, British Society of Rehabilitation Medicine, British Geriatrics Society, Alzheimer’s Society, Royal College of Nursing, Royal College of Psychiatrists, Help the Aged, Royal College of General Practitioners. ‘ …and it is helpful with questions about hope and… about pushing through, asking for prior experiences, these are points that the script covers very well’ . In the final stage, relevant quotes to illustrate the identified themes were extracted by MZ and approved by the qualitative research team. The name and version of the document used to guide the review of the study.

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  • Table 2 reports the areas of common agreement and it demonstrates that the language used to describe key stages and processes varies significantly between guidance documents.
  • However, on occasion, medical educators who hold HMS faculty appointments and who are directly involved in teaching and assessing HMS medical students may wish to pursue and publish educational QI studies that cut across courses or phases of the curriculum.
  • This approach should only be followed if a clear path of research building on previous research can be identified and that these trends follow a clear chronological order of development.
  • Expedited review is a procedure through which certain kinds of research may be reviewed and approved without convening a meeting of the IRB.

Because of inconsistency and potential misunderstanding in the use of the tem “quality,” this guidance will refer to risk of bias. Key themes and results that help predict future trends, illuminate previously hidden issues that can be applied to practice, and/or provide a means for understanding an important research problem with greater clarity. A case study paper usually examines a single subject of analysis, but case study papers can also be designed as a comparative investigation that shows relationships between two or among more than two subjects. The methods used to study a case can rest within a quantitative, qualitative, or mixed-method investigative paradigm.


The desirable difficulties framework suggests that study strategies whereby students actively generate a product or test themselves promote greater long-term learning than study strategies whereby students passively consume presentations. This is supported by strong evidence for the “generation effect,” in which new knowledge or skills are more robustly encoded and retrieved if you generate a solution, explanation, or summary, rather than looking it up . A few generative strategies that are commonly reported among students—summarization, self-explanation, and practice testing—are compared below. Summarization is a learning strategy in which students identify key points and combine them into a succinct explanation in their own words. As predicted by the generation effect, evidence suggests that summarization is more effective than rewriting notes (e.g., laboratory study by Bretzing and Kulhavy, 1979) or reviewing notes (e.g., classroom study by King, 1992).


For example, if a meta-analysis of existing literature is not a stated purpose of your research, it should not be discussed as a limitation. Do not apologize for not addressing issues that you did not promise to investigate in the introduction of your paper. The main focus of an academic research paper is to develop a new argument, and a research paper is likely to contain a literature review as one of its parts. In a research paper, you use the literature as a foundation and as support for a new insight that you contribute. The focus of a literature review, however, is to summarize and synthesize the arguments and ideas of others without adding new contributions.

The members of the qualitative research team tested and developed the coding framework by independently coding the same focus group transcript. The team discussed the coded transcripts during several meetings until arriving at a consensus on definitions and application of codes and sub codes . The WWC may review studies for multiple purposes, including different reports and re-reviews using updated standards. Details on any review may be accessed by making a selection from the drop down list. The comparison condition cost $2,400, but students could use financial aid towards the cost.

In addition, both the number of active strategies and the proportion of their study time using active strategies positively predicted exam performance. Second, on average, students started studying 6 days before an exam, but how early a student started studying was not related to performance on in-term or cumulative exams. Third, on average, students reported being distracted about 20% of their study time, and distraction while studying negatively predicted exam performance.

Educational Scholarship Review

This Guide presents issues key to the development of Comparative Effectiveness Reviews and describes recommended approaches for addressing difficult, frequently encountered methodological issues. Recognising the huge efficiencies that a comprehensive database of RCTs can bring, Cochrane has now developed infrastructure and processes to identify RCTs as soon as they are published . This work involves the regular searching of multiple databases, and the systematic identification of all RCTs retrieved. All of this of course depends on full reporting of trials so that they can be included in these systems . Defining the key stages in this review helps categorise the scholarship available, and it prioritises areas for development or further study.

Once you feel reasonably comfortable with the material, meet up with a friend for an hour and present them with what you know. Encourage them to ask questions about the material so you’ll be forced to re-explain concepts or think more critically about the subject. This spaces out your study time so that you have breaks to look forward to. Scheduling dedicated time slots for studying also helps you stay committed to your task. Whatever method you choose, make sure you have a complete inventory of these key concepts for review.

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