Crafting a Good Literature Review for a Dissertation
If you are taking a master’s or PhD course in a U.S. or UK based institution, you will most likely be required to write a dissertation at some point. Typically, you will be required to compile published academic content in your dissertation to either support or refute a key argument. If you are taking a quantitative approach to the dissertation, the literature review section will come into play.
If you are new to dissertation writing a good literature review for a dissertation will help you gain some invaluable experience. For starter, a literature review for a dissertation aims to identify and analyze relevant published literature that provides insight into your research question. Consequently, the literature review section of your dissertation will explain to your instructor the role of the different sources you have used in your research. Furthermore, it helps the professor to distinguish between what you have used independently and what other scholars have done.
If you are writing a literature review for a dissertation, the first step is to conduct extensive research. Typically, you will begin by reading any literature that can be obtained from the school library or any online repository. Alternatively, you can conduct in-depth research by creating an empirical thesis that helps you gauge the theories that inform your dissertation.
As you conduct your literature review, it is essential to set aside a specific point of view. Whether you want to discuss a specific theme, the current state of the research or a historical moment, a particular perspective is essential. For instance, it is crucial to frame your discussion concerning women's role in creating industrial revolution.
Similarly, it is important to analyze the scholarly material from different disciplines. For instance, you can look at philosophy to gain a broader perspective on the topic. The insights you can get from such an analysis are invaluable towards building a sound dissertation. You can then use the obtained material to define the scope and focus of your dissertation.
Literature Review Structure
If you are crafting a literature review for a dissertation in the U.S. or UK, then the sections to include will vary depending on your study area. However, one crucial element that is shared by all sections of a dissertation literature review is the structure. A good structure for your dissertation should include the following sections.