Handbooks of Research Methods and Applications series
Edited by Robert Stimson
Chapter 5: The literature review: the fundamental element of a research project
A literature review lies at the heart of conducting research, and in particular in undertaking a research project, and especially in writing a thesis or dissertation. It provides the intellectual context of the problem and will be utilized in all parts of a research project. To illustrate that effect Table 5.1 has been constructed. It shows a typical thesis structure, and outlines the connections of each stage to the literature view. Initially it has a fundamental influence upon the methodology used. That itself might even be drawn directly from the literature, where the researcher decides to explore a well-researched issue in a new context.
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