Does working on your literature review feel like moving through fog?
There’s a good reason for that, and you are not alone!
This 2-part workshop is designed for people who are in the first year of a research degree – but it may also be useful for supervisors who want to reflect on how they support their research students through planning and writing the literature review, or for candidates later in their candidature, revising the lit review chapter. It focuses primarily on the structure of the literature review, as part of a thesis or research proposal, rather than on systematic reviews or other types for publication.
We will begin with a brief overview of the purposes of the lit review in the thesis, and why these create a special challenge for the structure of the chapter. The workshop then identifies some stages in the process of reading, analysing literature, and structuring your writing, and what range of tools and techniques people might use for these. We will then look closely at some examples of successful literature review structures, and discuss some strategies for achieving these, which participants can try with their own research topics.
Before the session, please find one or more examples of a literature review structure in your own discipline (e.g. take a photo of a thesis table of contents, where the headings and subheadings of the lit review chapter are shown).
Cassily Charles has been teaching academic literacy, English linguistics and related topics for 20 years in Group of Eight, regional and international universities. She is currently the Academic Literacy Coordinator in the Research Office at Charles Sturt University, where she has developed the suite of online programs for the university’s research candidates, for which she was awarded an Australian Awards for University Teaching citation in 2016.