• April 20th, 2016

Literature Review.

Paper, Order, or Assignment Requirements

Purpose:

The purpose of this assignment is to give you practice writing a literature review so that you will be well prepared for your upper division course, especially your capstone class.

Assignment: Your job is to create a chart and write an essay that synthesizes and comes up with an original argument about recent scholarship on a topic chosen by the class. Your essay should discuss the three research studies we read in class.

Here are some questions that MIGHT help you narrow your focus:

n What findings do these scholars agree on?

n What themes do most of these scholars discuss?

n How has our discussion of this topic changed over time?

n How is this literature—as a whole—flawed or incomplete?

Do not answer each of these questions one after the other. I suggest them merely to help you approach the literature critically so that you can come up with your argument. You may decide to base your argument on ONE of these questions, but you don’t have to. Be forewarned though: if you do choose to focus on one of these questions, answering that question alone will not be enough. You will also have to help your reader understand why the answer to that question matters and what consequences it has.

What exactly should the paper include and in what order?

Your essay should be typed and double-spaced with normal margins. It should have the same sections you would find in any research paper or professional literature review:

  1. Abstract (paragraph-long description of what you studied, how you did your research and what you found out. This goes on a separate page.)
  2. Introduction (with a thesis stating what you studied and what your argument is)
  3. Methods (This is where you describe how you did your research)
  4. Findings (This is where you describe what the literature says as a whole. Put your chart here.)
  5. Discussion (This is where you discuss the real world implications of your findings, including what still needs to researched and what policy or program implications the research raises.)
  6. Conclusion

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