YM 4990: Fourth Year Seminar

Conducting a Literature Review

What is a Literature Review?

The Purpose of the Literature Review is to:

  • - Set the background on what has been researched on a topic.
  • - Show why a topic is significant to a subject area.
  • - Discover relationships between ideas.
  • - Identify major themes & concepts.
  • - Identify critical gaps & points of disagreement.
  • - Help the researcher turn a network of articles into a coherent view of the literature.

Your professor will establish guidelines for writing a literature review. The following video, Literature Review: An Overview for Graduate Students, by North Caroline State University Libraries is an excellent starting point. It discusses what a literature review is, how to review the literature and steps in writing a literature review. (10 minutes)

Check the bibliography!

Sources typically end with a bibliography or works cited, which you can use to find key books and articles on your topic.

Find articles by journal title:

Do you have a citation of an article? Are you wondering if the library has a copy?

1. Go to library.northpark.edu
2. Click “Articles”
3. Click “Find a specific journal by title
4. Enter in the title of the journal and click “Go”

If we don’t have access to the journal, you can request a copy of the article through our Interlibrary Loan service. We will email you when your article arrives; please allow 7–14 days for delivery.

Citation Tracking

Check the "cited by" references in Google Scholar.  Look for the linked number [i.e., cited by 53] which indicate subsequent citations to the record.

Google Scholar Search

Writing Center

The Writing Center provides free assistance to all undergraduates! Services include:

  • - generate ideas
  • - plan outlines
  • - revise drafts to strengthen organization, development, consistency, clarity, and more
  • - check bibliographies and in-text citations