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Introduction to Scholarly Communication: Literature Review

Intended for graduate students, this guide provides essential information for graduate students to maximize the impact of their scholarly endeavors.

Action Items

Download citations to citation management software. 

Literature Review Help Sites

University of California, Santa Cruz
     http://library.ucsc.edu/help/howto/write-a-literature-review

University of North Caroline, Chapel Hill
     http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/literature-reviews/

University of Toronto
     http://advice.writing.utoronto.ca/types-of-writing/literature-review/

 

Literature Reviews

A good literature review finds relevant academic literature and places it in a context that supports future research.  In other words, what background does the audience need to know in order to understand the innovation that you are presenting in your thesis or article?

 

Reed, L. (1998). Performing a Literature Review. 1998 Frontiers in Engineering Conference. IEEE: Tempe, AZ. Available online.

 

Tips for a Successful Literature Review

Choosing "Fulltext" options generally limits to articles within the past 30 years
  • Historical articles sometimes needed
  • Use EI Engineering Village or other abstract database for historical literature
Develop a Search strategy
  • Keywords - use to focus search on your topic
  • Subject Descriptors - match your keywords to these to maximize efficient searching
Download citations to citation management software to track where you have been

Purdue AllSearch

Start at http://www.lib.purdue.edu. Click Search All.  (Link opens a new window.)

  • Google type search interface with facets to narrow search. 
  • Provides extensive, broad searching across disciplines.
  • Includes everything owned by Purdue plus many things we do not.
  • Serendipitous searching.
  • A good first place to start.
  • The place to find books.
  • The place to find print editions of magazine articles. 
  • Retrieve anything we don't own by clicking on the FInd It@Purdue Libraries button. Check Purdue Alma for full text availability

How to Use Databases

  • Google type search interface with facets to narrow search. 
  • Provides in-depth, efficient, subject specific searching.
  • Includes academic, scholarly journals, some of which Purdue does not subscribe to.
  • Results are highly targeted to discipline.
  • A good place to continue a search after you have figured out useful keywords.
  • A good place to go when you want a quick, accurate search.
  • Retrieve anything we don't own by clicking on the FInd It@Purdue Libraries button. Check Purdue Alma for full text availability

Subject Guide

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