Category Archives: literature review

writing course: The Literatures

So next to The Literatures. Literatures, a broad term covering anything from the scholarly works to popular texts, social and print media and policy texts. But always including the scholarly materials relevant to the research being reported in the paper. … Continue reading

Posted in dinner party, Howard Becker, literature review, Pierre Bayard, table metaphor | Tagged , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

thesis know-how – don’t write an essay

Examiners do not want to read a thesis that contains a lot of mini-essays. To understand the problem with the thesis-as-essay, imagine the examiner reading a methods chapter. It starts off badly. While not in these words, the writer basically says … Continue reading

Posted in essay, examiner, expert, literature review, methods chapter, thesis | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments

your academic writing is “slow” – some thoughts on pace

Last week I happened across a facebook post which went a little like this. “My supervisor has just told me my literature chapter was slow and tortuous. What do I do?” This feedback is a pretty clear example of a … Continue reading

Posted in academic writing, literature review | Tagged , , , , | 21 Comments

planning v creativity in academic writing

Now a lot of people know that I’m an advocate of planning your writing. I’m not a great fan of just writing and just writing and then editing and just writing again and editing some more. I know people do … Continue reading

Posted in academic writing, creativity, literature review, planning, planning a paper | Tagged , , , | 12 Comments

a questions approach to the literature review

There are various ways to approach literature reviewing. The most common is to start by scoping the field. (See the post on Inger and my blogging paper for an example of what scoping looks like.) Once you’ve scoped, you then … Continue reading

Posted in literature review, literature themes, questions | Tagged , , | 7 Comments

the literature review – how old are the sources?

I recently had an email from a colleague asking me what I would do if I was examining a thesis and the vast majority of the literatures were over ten years old. Would this be a problem? What would I … Continue reading

Posted in contribution, literature review, location | Tagged , , , , | 8 Comments

working with literatures – love the uncertainty

I am frequently asked by doctoral researchers about reviewing literatures. As they talk, I often get a strong sense that their questions are accompanied by feelings of inadequacy.My guess is that they feel they ought to have more of a … Continue reading

Posted in doctoral research, literature mapping, literature review, literature themes, metaphor, uncertainty, wonder | Tagged , , , , | 10 Comments