Category Archives: literature review

making a summary #literatureknowhow

Over the course of the PhD you have to read a lot. After having written an initial literature review, you keep reading and reading throughout your project. And when you’re done with your field or library work, and analysed your … Continue reading

Posted in literature review, summary | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

literature know-how – beware too much naming, not enough framing

You’re in the middle of working with literature. You find that you have to bring several texts together and compare them. Why? Well, you might be trying to establish points of difference and similarity between several papers. Or maybe you … Continue reading

Posted in list, literature review, literature reviews, paragraph, too much naming, topic sentence | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments

I can’t find anything written on my topic… really?

Sometimes people tell me that they can’t find any literature that is relevant to their research. They are doing something that nobody else has researched and written about and so there isn’t anything to read. What, they ask, can they … Continue reading

Posted in focusing in, literature mapping, literature review, no literatures | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

all that reading? think of it as tracing your family tree

When you start on a PhD, or indeed on any new research project, there’s always a lot of reading to be done. It’s easy to lose track of what this reading is for and to forget why engaging with all … Continue reading

Posted in family tree, George Patton, literature review, metaphor, reading | Tagged , , , , | 7 Comments

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