Dissertation Literature Review

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Anonymous #1
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Report Thread starter 9 months ago
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Probably a stupid question but over Christmas break I need to do my dissertation literature review.

Problem is I have no idea how to do it. I’ve had to change supervisor as mine left the university at short notice and I’ve not yet been able to schedule a meeting with my new one and now everyone has finished for Christmas.

I have found all my literature, journal articles, books and legislation but no idea what to do now.

Can anyone point me in the right direction?

Thanks
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Maj570
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Everyone goes through the same confusion don't worry (I was at the same point a few months ago) I would say start by trying to take the main points that each journal article/book etc. make surrounding your topic. After this try to look at comparing them, this will help you to see where the literature agrees, what specific areas most of the literature is surrounding and show where there are still existing gaps.

That really is all the basics there is to it and hopefully, once you have done this you'll be able to speak to a supervisor for some more specifics regarding your topic. Best of luck!
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mnot
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(Original post by Anonymous)
Probably a stupid question but over Christmas break I need to do my dissertation literature review.

Problem is I have no idea how to do it. I’ve had to change supervisor as mine left the university at short notice and I’ve not yet been able to schedule a meeting with my new one and now everyone has finished for Christmas.

I have found all my literature, journal articles, books and legislation but no idea what to do now.

Can anyone point me in the right direction?

Thanks
Introduce the background and the question you are posing.
Go through the key developments and important developments over time in the field.
Then focus on the latest boundary of knowledge describe what has happened recently and this should lead to the next stuff to investigate i.e. your project.

Find some "review papers" and read some lit reviews in other thesis.
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threeportdrift
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(Original post by Anonymous)
Probably a stupid question but over Christmas break I need to do my dissertation literature review.

Problem is I have no idea how to do it. I’ve had to change supervisor as mine left the university at short notice and I’ve not yet been able to schedule a meeting with my new one and now everyone has finished for Christmas.

I have found all my literature, journal articles, books and legislation but no idea what to do now.

Can anyone point me in the right direction?

Thanks
A lit review is a summary of the current state of discussion in your sector as it pertains to your research question. So broadly, (because it varies by subject and the exact research question) you need to acknowledge who set the basic standards around the subject (eg who wrote the classics on pre-primate evolution) quite briefly. Then narrow down to who says what in the specific area of your research (who is currently writing about the evolution of lemurs), and then who's writing exemplifies the conflict your research will resolve, or who didn't ask the right question you are asking and answering, or who didn't go far enough in their argument and you are going to take it further in your research (lemur survival is about island evolution but their diversity isn't, it's about environmental diversity).

So you take the reader through a chronology of the development of thought and research, going from broad to narrow in the context of your specific research question.

Work out your word count first and stick to it strictly, ie it's maybe 5-10% of your entire dissertation, so that's 1-2% on basic history, 1-3% on general literature relating to your question and 3-5% on the specific writing that exposes the need for your research question to be answered.
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University of Portsmouth Student Rep
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(Original post by Anonymous)
Probably a stupid question but over Christmas break I need to do my dissertation literature review.

Problem is I have no idea how to do it. I’ve had to change supervisor as mine left the university at short notice and I’ve not yet been able to schedule a meeting with my new one and now everyone has finished for Christmas.

I have found all my literature, journal articles, books and legislation but no idea what to do now.

Can anyone point me in the right direction?

Thanks
Hiya!

I would have a look on your dissertation module page on your university's learning platform where you can then look over previous lecture material where should be more information about writing a dissertation. I recommend emailing your new tutor as hopefully they will reply, but if they don't until after the Christmas break then they should be able to organise a virtual meeting with you perhaps where you can discuss your research.

I have just started writing my literature review. My first step was to find as many necessary journal papers (that are credible and from journal articles) and downloaded them onto a Google Drive which I share with my tutor who can review whether they are acceptable. I have then highlighted relevant research and information from these papers to start writing my literature review. I am writing my literate review thematically, grouping research into two relevant themes. You can be inspired from previous research and how they structured their lit review, so the more papers you look at the better!

Hope this helps. Sam- Official Student Rep
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