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Literature Reviews

A review of the literature is conducted to find out what is known on a subject and what is not known. It establishes where your own research fits into an existing body of knowledge and avoids duplicating work.

Planning your review  |  Conducting your review  |  Managing your references  |  Keeping up to date  |  Training and support


Planning your literature review

It is important to have a well-defined research question and to be clear about your objectives when you start work on a literature review. You will need to spend time planning your search; thinking about sources to search, terms to use and the search language.

 

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Conducting your literature review

Once you have defined your search concepts and thought about your search terms, you can begin searching for your literature review. We suggest you start your search by using relevant subject databases and then consider using citation searching.

Searching one database at a time enhances your search by making full use of the available subject indexing and search functionality.

Here are some useful resources to help you get started.

 
 

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Managing your references

Visit Studying Effectively for guidance on reference management tools, including EndNote, the reference management software used at the University of Nottingham.

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Keeping up to date

How can you keep up to date with everything published in your field? Saved searches and email alerts can help with this.

Database alerts

Get notifications when articles are added, referenced or cited.

Database alerts

BrowZine

Use this service to find, read and monitor academic journals.

BrowZine

Zetoc

British Library journal contents page service.

Zetoc

 

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Training and support

The following online courses are relevant to researchers undertaking a literature review or those seeking to expand their knowledge of literature searching techniques and tools:

  • Literature Searching and the Literature Review: this stand-alone course can be accessed via the central short courses portal or directly via Moodle (log-in required).
  • Researcher Information Skills: these faculty-specific courses can booked via the central short courses portal.
  • Introduction to EndNote for Researchers: this course can be booked via the central short courses portal.

 

 

 

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University of Nottingham Libraries

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Lenton Lane
Nottingham, NG7 2NR

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