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A work that discusses the published information on a given topic. Unlike a research paper, a literature review simply summarizes and synthesizes the arguments of others without adding personal contributions. Literature reviews can take several forms. They can be part of a longer research paper, dissertation, or thesis, or they can stand alone. They can also be selective or comprehensive. A selective review will only use a certain number of sources while a comprehensive review will attempt to discuss as many published sources on the topic as possible. The nature of the review will depend on the particular assignment.
For detailed information explaining literature reviews and how to construct them, please visit:UNC Literature Reviews
Literature Reviews: Undergrads vs. Grads
The basic purpose and construction of a literature review will be the same whether you are an undergrad or grad student. However, the length and depth of the review will differ.
Most likely you will be writing a Selective literature review as either an assignment by itself or part of a research paper. This means your instructor will probably specify how many sources will be needed for the review and may specify the types of sources required.
You may be writing a Selective or Comprehensive literature review by itself, part of a research paper, or for a longer thesis or dissertation. If Selective, your instructor may specify the number of resources required.
Please consult with your instructor to know what type of literature review will be required!
Literature Review Overview - North Carolina State University