Literature review

What is a literature review?

A literature review is a type of academic writing that provides an overview of existing knowledge in a particular field of research.

A good literature review summarises, analyses, evaluates and synthesises the relevant literature within a particular field of research. It illuminates how knowledge has evolved within the field, highlighting what has already been done, what is generally accepted, what is emerging and what is the current state of thinking on the topic. Additionally, literature reviews identify the gaps in the current knowledge - that is, uninvestigated or under-researched areas.

Whether the literature review is short or extended, similar structural and linguistic features apply.