Chapter 3 – Review of related literature

The review of related literature includes
– Systematically identifying
– locating
– analyzing documents

pertaining to the research topic

Purpose of review of literature
is to identify information that already exists about the selected topic

Literature review can
– point out research strategies
– procedures,
– instruments that have and have not worked in the past

Well- organized review
a smaller well organized review is better and preferred to a review containing many studies that are not related to the topic.

Heavily research topics/areas
usually provide enough references directly related to the topic, eliminating the need for secondary studies.

Little research topics/areas
usually require the review of any study related in some meaningful way to the topic so that the researcher may develop a logical framework and rationale for the study.

Review for quantitative
Researches construct their review before starting the study.

Review for qualitative
researches construct their review after starting the study.

Identifying keywords
Most sources have alphabetical subject indexes. Create a list of keywords to guide the literature search.

Identifying your sources
A good starting point is a narrow search of pertinent educational encyclopedias, handbooks and annual reviews found in libraries. These will provide an overview of issues in various subject areas.

Primary source
an article or report written by the person who conducted the study is a primary source.

** primary sources are preferred in a review.

secondary source
a brief description of a study written by someone other than the original researcher .

Catalog system
most libraries have a catalog system that indexes all the sources available they are by author, title and subject. It is beneficial to become familiar with the library and its resources

Key word search
it uses phrases, or terms pertinent to the topic to identify potentially useful sources

Boolean operators (for keyword search)
Boolean operators such as AND, OR, NOT may narrow or expand the search. AND and NOT narrow the search. OR expands the search. It is best to start with a narrow search.

Computer databases
Computer databases can facilitate the identification of relevant primary sources. Among the most used are ERIC, Education Index, PsycInfo and Dissertation abstracts.

ERIC
is the world’s largest database on education and is used by more than 500,000 people each year.

Searching the internet WWW
Addresses containing “ed” or ending in “edu” are related to educational institutions.
– .ed /.edu (educational)
– .com (commercial)
– .org (organization, including professional)
– .gov (government)

Becoming a member of a Professional Organization
– websites for professional organizations maintain links to current research in a particular discipline.

Popular Professional Organizations
– Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development
– National Council of Teachers of Mathematics,
– National Council for the Social Studies
– National Science Teachers Association
– International reading association.

Evaluating sources
– What was the problem statement of the study (hypothesis)
– Who was studied
-Where was the source published
-When was the study conducted – How old is it?
– How was the study conducted.