At Datastat Consultancy, we know the literature review is critical to any successful study. As a result, literature resources are provided. This helps both in the theoretical and empirical review. Above all, we provide access to hundreds of online international journals and digital libraries.
We believe that the literature review should describe, summarize, evaluate and clarify the whole study. It should give a theoretical base for the research and help you (the researcher) determine the nature of your research. Works, which are irrelevant, should be discarded and those, which are peripheral, should be looked at critically.
The literature review has a two-fold purpose: to justify the focus of your study and to provide a rationale for your methodological approach. To do both effectively, you need to engage in considerable synthesis and critical analysis (terms you may have heard before!) of current research in your field.
The synthesis will allow you to address inconsistencies in existing research and shed light on contradictions that point to the need for your study. You want to avoid a summary of individual studies. While discussed in-depth, they will ultimately be used to drive an ideas-based argument for your own original research.
A critical analysis is necessary for exploring the strengths and weaknesses of recent studies in the field. Those studies help one to better understand and discuss existing inconsistencies and conflicts. Regardless of which research you are conducting, analysis is a critical part of justifying your proposed study’s methodological approach.
The literature review can be challenging for many of our dissertation consulting clients. Even for experienced researchers, the time required even just to identify recent research that’s relevant to their topics is often in short supply, because of teaching loads, work obligations, and managing a work/life balance.
In general, the literature review should:
- Provide a context for the research
- Justify the research
- Ensure the research hasn’t been done before (or if it is repeated, that it is marked as a “replication study”)
- Show where the research fits into the existing body of knowledge
- Enable the researcher to learn from previous theory on the subject
- Illustrate how the subject has been studied previously
- Highlight flaws in previous research
- Outline gaps in previous research
- Show that the work is adding to the understanding and knowledge of the field
- Help refine, refocus or even change the topic
Here at Datastat Consultancy, consultants have been assisted with the research and analysis required for a compelling literature review for thousands of doctoral candidates. In fact, many of our clients initially reach out to us once they reach the literature review stage and then stay with us for dissertation help throughout the entire process! We can absolutely tailor this support to meet your current needs, timeline, and budget, so please let us know how we can assist.