Skip to main content

Literature Review: Overview

Talk to a Librarian

What is a Literature Review?

A thorough and comprehensive examination of the research and/or theory relevant to a topic. A literature review analyzes and integrates scholarly research and theory in an organized, prose fashion.

Purpose of a Literature Review

As a means of disseminating information to scholars in a particular discipline the literature review has four purposes:

  • to describe work done on a specific area of research 
  • to evaluate this work
  • to identify areas of controversy in the literature
  • to formulate questions that need to be addressed further