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The Five Basic Rules Of Writing A Research Paper Literature Review


Research paper literature reviews are basically a kind of assignment that requires a student to do an in-depth analysis of the most significant literary works on a particular topic. For instance, one might have to discuss love in the works of William Shakespeare, in which case a student would read the works where love is discussed as well as secondary works where the topic is discussed by academic scholars. There’s room for a lot of confusion, but we’ve set out the five basic rules of writing a great research paper:

  1. Provide an Overview
  2. A great introduction technique for this kind of assignment is to provide background information on the major parts of the work you will be discussing. Introduce the primary works followed by secondary works you will analyze and how they fit in the context of study. Bring up any questions you may have as well as what has influenced your decision to take on this topic.

  3. Provide your Thesis Argument
  4. Though you will be doing an analysis of other works, you still will be presenting an argument. State this at the end of your introduction. Make sure you narrow your focus to just a single topic. You will be dealing with multiple works and comparing them all at several levels will be to large a scope to be effective.

  5. Separate Secondary Works
  6. Start with your analysis of the primary works then introduce secondary works in another paragraph. Limit each paragraph to discussing one work, though you may have multiple paragraphs to discuss your primary work. It might be a good idea to start with an outline just to make sure that you stay on track and don’t confuse your reader with complex ideas.

  7. Make Topical Connections
  8. Group categories and concepts and stick with a single point of discussion per section. For instance, you may want to discuss the topic of forbidden love. Keep the primary work and all secondary works that discuss this topic to one section, then move on to another talking point and do the same thing.

  9. Give a Conclusion of all the Works
  10. Lastly, since you will have discussed multiple works in your research paper literature review, it’s a good idea if you summarize and synthesize the content of your work in a well-thought conclusion so you’re reader has an easier time understanding and appreciating what you have accomplished in your research.