Find information on spaces, staff, and services.
Has this ever happened to you? One day, you are happily analyzing your research data. The next day, you are scrambling to figure out how to research and write a literature review. You’ve searched for and read research articles before. You may have even written or contributed to research articles. You KNOW your disciplines foundations. So why is researching and writing a literature review about something you know, giving you so many challenges? Literature reviews are notoriously difficult to write, especially for the first time. There are well-established reasons for this. As with any new and complex process, educating yourself is an excellent first step. In this micro-course, we will provide an overview of what literature reviews are, provide fundamental skills in both researching for and writing literature reviews, and suggest resources to help you along the way. Researching and writing literature reviews is not an easy project, but it is a project you can accomplish. The Writing Center, University of Wisconsin – Madison Libraries, University of Wisconsin – Madison.
Literature reviews are notoriously difficult to write, especially when attempted for the first time. What makes them so challenging?
Rhetoric is a complex facet of communication that has been explored and theorized for millennia, comprising an academic discipline in itself to this day. For now, what you need to know about rhetoric is this: Generally, “rhetoric” (and phrases like “rhetorical awareness” or “rhetorical features”) refers to the means of persuasion at play in a text. As you can imagine, the various means by which you might persuade someone (or a whole community of readers) will be different from one situation to the next. For example, if your purpose in communicating is to explain how climate change works, the way you go about explaining that will look different if you’re talking to a 6th-grade class versus colleagues in the Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.
This micro-course addresses all three of these challenges to help you succeed in researching and writing literature reviews as a UW-Madison graduate student.
The course is broken into four lessons and includes opportunities for reflection, planning, and checking your knowledge along the way. While each of these lessons addresses specific facets of researching and writing literature reviews, please note that the many variations in literature review requirements prevent us from laying out a concrete step-by-step guide. What this course offers are strategies and guiding principles to aid your development of a process that works for you in your specific context.
By completing this course, you will be able to: