Award Winning Tutorial
This interactive tutorial from UCLA Libraries is recommended for all students completing literature reviews.
Searching For Sources
Our Staying Organized With Research Guide covers options for saving and organizing searches and sources.
“the literature”: all the scholarly writing about a topic
literature search (definition): a well thought out and organized search for all of the books, articles, dissertations, and other authoritative sources published on a topic.
Literature review (definition): synthesizing sources from the literature search, usually in writing.
- Narrative: an overview of the current state of the literature. Limited by a number of sources. (ex. 5-10 articles)
- Systematic: Comprehensive overview of all published and unpublished research on the topic, limited by time frame (ex. 10 years).
- Meta-analysis: Uses statistical analysis to combine the data from different studies
- Meta-synthesis: Uses non-statistical methods to compare research studies by theme or theory
Source: U of Toledo Guide
These guides from other libraries provide detailed advice appropriate for graduate and undergraduate research projects.