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Literature Review Outline Example

If you've ever attended college than you know what a literature review is and how to write it correctly. For those of you who don't, let me explain. Typically, this is a part of a more significant paper like a thesis or coursework, based on further investigation of a complex issue. This is where you are required to review a lot of credible resources that you will use to back up your own ideas later on. In this article, we will consider a literature review outline that will suit any topic you will have to deal with.

Example of Literature Review Outline

Those of you who wonder how to write a literature review should consider the following literature review outline template before you start.

I. Introduction

a. Introduce the topic of investigation, its relevance and your personal interest in it. What problems do you want to solve?

b. Formulate the research questions as it will answer questions you want to find. Present the methodology you are going to use and the results you expect to achieve. Name the overall trends in the literature regarding your topic.

II. Subject A.

a. Review the matter in general terms, what are the notions and details about the subject that readers should know.

b. Narrow down the subject. Choose a characteristic or an aspect to analyze.

i. Review study 1. Give the research questions, hypotheses, methods, and participants. What was achieved as a result of that study?

ii. Study 2. In addition to repeating the above procedure, make sure you answer the following question. How is it different from study one in terms of methods and research questions?

iii. Study 3. Repeat the procedure above. What are the main peculiarities of the study? Dwell on research questions and the methodology used as well as participants and the outcomes.

c. Choose another subtopic for analysis.

i. Study 4. Give a review of the methodology, research questions, participants, and results.

ii. Study 5. Repeat the above procedure. Is there anything different in how the study was carried out in comparison with the one before?

iii. Study 6. Dwell on the research questions, methods used, participants, and findings.

d. Go on with subtopics to Subject A. Make sure you repeat the above-mentioned procedure when dealing with studies related to the subtopic.

III. Subject B. Take another broad aspect related to your topic. Repeat the procedure as mentioned above.  

IV. Keep going with subjects until your topic is presented from different perspectives.

V. Conclusion

a. In this part, make sure you mention common findings, pros, and cons of different approaches.

b. Which studies do you consider to have more scientific value than others, why?

c. What questions remain unanswered? What can and should be done to make up for that?

d. Are there any gaps in your review?

e. How are you going to use them in your further investigation?

If the above shocks you, you probably have not seen a scientific literature review outline. Though, in general terms, it is pretty much the same. You have to identify the problem, formulate the research questions, and find answers to them in relevant sources. You can always buy a literature review if you are afraid of the research process.

How to Write a Literature Review Outline Correctly

Having given a general answer to how to structure a literature review, it is worth giving some tips on how you can handle the task on your own.

  1. Find a topic that is interesting to you as well as your readers. Also, choose something popular as there will be a lot of sources to work with. With that in mind, you might want to approach the research process differently, look for another paper, and so forth.
  2. Read and analyze articles carefully. Logically organize them. Structure your own research accordingly.
  3. Start writing your draft. Proofread or give your paper to someone to review.
  4. Make amendments and finish the job.
  5. Well done, now you should have an understanding of how to write a literature review together with a sample literature review outline!

As you can see, this type of research is quite complex, though it gets more comfortable if you know how to write a literature review outline. Follow the structure mentioned above, and you will be one step closer to success. Most importantly, allocate enough time to do all the research beforehand, or you'll risk missing the deadline. Of course, you could use some professional writing assistance if everything's getting out of control. Your final grade is worth a lot, and there is no point in spoiling it with one mistake.

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