Chapter 5: The Literature Review

Key Takeaways


  • A literature review is a survey of everything that has been written about a particular topic, theory, or research question. It is focused on the research related to a topic and the researchers who undertook that research. It is different from an essay, which proves a point, and an annotated bibliography, which is a reference plus a short description.
  • Acceptable literature review sources include peer reviewed journal articles, edited books, and, to a limited degree, professional journals. Professional association websites should be used sparingly and carefully.
  • The 5C’s of literature review writing are: cite, compare, contrast, critique, and connect.
  • APA referencing is a set of rules for writing and referencing (citing) your sources.




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