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Nurse Anesthesia: Literature Reviews

Basic search tips and strategies for nurse anesthesia students

What is a Literature Review?

A literature review is a means of demonstrating an author's knoweldge about a particular field of study, including vocabulary, theories, key variables and phenomena, and its methods and history.  Conducting a literature review also informs the student of the influential researchers and research groups in the field.

Randolph, Justus J. "A Guide to Writing the Dissertation Literature Review."Practical Assessment, Research & Evaluation 14.13 (2009): 1-13.

What is the Purpose of a Literature Review?

  • distinguishing what has been done from what needs to be done
  • discovering important variable relevant to the topic
  • synthesizing and gaining a new perspective
  • identifying relationships between ideas and practices
  • establishing the context of the topic or problem
  • rationalizing the significance of the problem
  • enhancing and acquiring the subject vocabulary
  • understanding the structure of the subject
  • relating ideas and theory to application
  • identifying the main methodologies and research techniques that have been used
  • placing the research in a historical context to show familiarity with state-of-the art developments

Hart, Chris. Doing a Literature Review: Releasing the Social Science Research Imagination. London: Sage Publications, 1998, p.27.

Books about Literature Reviews & Thesis Writing