A literature review is a discussion of previously published information on a particular topic, providing summary and synthesis to help readers understand the research that has been completed on a subject and why it is important. Unlike a research paper, a literature review does not develop a new argument, instead the review focuses on what has been argued or proven in past papers. However, a literature review should not just be an annotated bibliography that lists the sources found; the literature review should be organized thematically.
The Literature Review Process
Here are some research planning suggestions as you prepare to write your literature review:
It can be hard to picture what a successful nursing literature review should look like, even after learning about the essential components. Here are some examples of published literature reviews on issues related to nursing education:
Are you having trouble accessing articles? Consult the “Accessing Articles” tab under “Conducting Research” on the left side of this guide for information on how to access articles.