Your review should summarize, synthesize and evaluate at least 5 empirical research articles that are related to your topic, and you may (and probably should) include other sources as well, such as more empirical articles, statistics from census data, popular opinion articles, and/or other publicly available data.. Should be from the https://www.utdallas.edu/library/
Your literature review will be graded for: (1) critical thinking about the topic, including summarizing, synthesis, and evaluation, and (2) effective writing, including the use of appropriate grammar, punctuation, mechanics, and APA-style.
There are many ways to organize a literature review. Consider the following as a starting point.
- Title your literature review with a descriptive title; the reader should be able to anticipate the content of the paper based on the title.
- Introduce your topic in the first one- or two- paragraphs. Explain the topic, mentioning how the world is changing with respect to that topic and outlining some potential consequence for children. It is okay to begin with short, illustrative anecdotes or examples from the media to make the topic more relatable and concrete. The introductory paragraphs should make the reader care about the topic and want to continue reading more about the topic. Within the last few sentences of your introduction, set forth the organization of your paper: what themes will you cover?
- In the body of your paper, discuss your empirical sources in a way that is organized by theme, and refer to the sources with in-text citations. Do organize the research thematically, integrating and synthesizing the findings. Do not provide a series of paragraphs in which you summarize each empirical article separately. The length of the body of your paper will vary by topic; consider three paragraphs as a minimum.
- Conclude the paper with a few paragraphs pertaining to take home messages, addressing the following:
- Strengths/Weaknesses/Limitations: What are the MAIN contributions/problems/big gaps within the empirical research? Focus on the most important issues, keeping in mind that all research has some limitations.
- Future directions: What needs to be done to further the research surrounding your topic, focusing on the most important next steps?
- Implications: What are the potential implications for this issue as that relates to children, theories about children, public policy and/or parenting?
- End your paper with a final succinct paragraph reminding us of the topic under investigation, the most central findings, and a take home message.Think – what is the food for thought pertaining to your topic and its relevance to child development?
- In addition to in-text citations, you should also provide a list of references, including empirical sources and other media. Title your list with the word “references” centered at the top of the paper and list each reference alphabetically beneath the title, using double-spacing and hanging indent. To format your citations and reference, use the 6th edition of the APA manual, for which there are many resources available online.For example: https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/a..
- Be selective. First, be selective in your choice of article, not simply finding the first 5 articles that you encounter. Choose articles that build your review. Second, be selective with your choices about the important points to highlight in the review. The type of information you choose should related to the focus of the review and the theme of the paragraph. You do not have to discuss all parts of all empirical papers that you include.
- Use evidence to support your claims. This is a scientific paper. Scientific findings come from rigorous empirical research.
- Write for a broad audience such as introductory psychology majors. Your audience is likely to be interested in the topic; however, they need you to write clearly and to define difficult terms.
- Use direct quotes sparingly if ever. Literature reviews should paraphrase research findings; they should not directly quote the paper.
- Revise. Read. Revise.Visit the UTD writing center for assistance if needed: https://www.utdallas.edu/studentsuccess/writing-an…
- Avoid plagiarism.