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Writing a Literature Review

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Writing a Literature Review

The oft-repeated instruction to ‘do a literature review’ belies some of the complexities of the task. In order to understand the present ‘state of the art’ you too need to read what other people have written and make some kind of an assessment of where your research will fit into that body of work.

Swales and Feak (2000, p. 115) explain that literature reviews fall into two basic types: a survey article (an expert's general review of current literature on a particular topic) and a review that forms part of a research paper, proposal, thesis or dissertation. Here, we are obviously concerned with the latter, and in particular with the proposal literature review.

This type of review forms an important introduction to the ...

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