What Do You Need To Write A Proper Dissertation Literature Review?

If you are writing a dissertation literature review you need a few different things. The first is a handful of sources. Your literature review should be a significantly large portion of your total paper. This is one of the most important chapters because it provides your reader with context. The literature review gives your reader a thorough understanding as to what research is already been conducted on your subject and what research still needs to be conducted. You have to prove to the reader that you are conducting something that has yet to be conducted by other researchers, and something for which there is a demand within your subject field. By compiling research and literature produced by other people in your field you can show exactly what work is already been completed and what work still needs to be completed. This will give your paper the necessary authority.

  • You need to make sure that you have adequate number of resources. Consider the total page length of your dissertation and the degree that you were trying to obtain. Higher degrees require more pages for the total dissertation and a higher number of sources. On average a dissertation will need between 30 and 40sources. Your literature review should review the top 15, 20, or even 25.
  • When searching for sources, make sure that you find things which are current. Many instructions will indicate how current the research must be, but a good rule of thumb is to only use sources that have been published within the last five years. You want to find sources which have been peer reviewed, if possible. You should look through your library databases to find access to recently published materials. If possible, print or download the entire publication so that you can read through the whole of it. But use the abstract to determine if it fits within the parameters of your project first.
  • The literature review needs to review not just author one said this and author two said that, but it should present a cohesive background with information from previously completed literature interwoven. Instead of simply saying author one said this in their paper, you can say that previous research has already dictated a certain number of things, based on the work of author one. This will present your information in a much better fashion than simply listing the research today chronologically.