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Sociology: Writing a Literature Review

What is a Literature Review?

The literature review surveys and evaluates the relevant and related scholarship on a particular area of research or issue. It summarizes and evaluates the discussions and debate surrounding the topic, noting limitations, interpretations and approaches that support and establish the significance of your argument, research or methodology.  

  • Presents a justification for your paper/research: show how your work fills a gap, or fulfills a need that has been identified by other researchers in the field.
  • Informs your methodology
  • Provides data that can be used to test your theories or results.
  • Helps generate a new theory.

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