The literature review

Most research projects include a literature review to determine what knowledge exists on the subject under study and to develop the theoretical framework that will be used in the study. The literature review sets the context for the entire research project by explaining what others have found in researching the same or similar specific research questions. The literature review is written in a narrative format.

A literature review begins with an introductory paragraph in which the writer frames the research topic and its significance, and the puzzle that the researcher is addressing. To do that, the writer will summarize the major relevant arguments on the research subject, highlighting the main issues and how schools of thought might differ. If there are key terms to be defined, the writer should do that here.

The body of the literature review tells readers what others have found in their studies about your specific research question (the extent of existing knowledge on your specific research question), critiques what is right or wrong with these other studies, and discusses how the work is distinguishable from the research study you are proposing. Your review should organize material by theme or method or what makes sense for the project. This literature review should include a critical review of at least 5-8 appropriate articles, to include scholarly, peer-reviewed articles, material from government publications and websites, or other topic-appropriate source. (approximately 2 pages)

The conclusion should summarize the primary “sense of the literature”, encapsulating for the reader where the existing literature ends and your research will start as you seek to answer the question that still remains and add to the body of knowledge.

Please cite in Bluebook format.

You may find this PPT from NC State helpful. Our library also provides a great overview under this link:

As you proof read your assignment I encourage you to work with Belcher, Wendy Laura. (2009). “Editing Your Sentences” In Writing Your Journal Article in 12 Weeks: A Guide to Academic Publishing Success. Thousand Oaks, California: Sage. This resource has a nice step-by-step process for enhancing your writing.

You must complete a research paper on a controversial Constitutional Law topic. Your topic was approved with your Week 2 Research Paper Proposal assignment.

Your paper should be no more than 10 pages. Here are some general guidelines when writing your paper:

1. Write an introduction, which clearly identifies the topic of your report and the issues that you seek to illuminate. The introduction should include the thesis or basis of your report, and preview your major points.

2. The body of your report should be dedicated to support your thesis with claims gleaned from your research (into what others have written on the topic; data that you have gathered), readings from the course text, discussion boards, case law and law review articles. Please cite your references at the end of your report. Please include at least 8 references to support the thesis of your paper. All reference need to be in bluebook format

You must explain the issue, analyze both side of the argument on the issue and discuss the current status of the law. You also need to discuss any current pending cases and unresolved legal questions. Finally, you will discuss how you see the law (statutory and case law) changing on this issue in the future and why.

3. Conclude your report by recapitulating your thesis and explaining in greater detail the significance of your findings. If you would like, include in your conclusion some questions or recommendations about the topic which you’ve written.

I strongly recommend that you proof read your paper several times to ensure that you have no spelling, grammar or punctuation errors and to ensure that your paper flows well and is organized

Attached is a grading rubric