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First, there are the primary studies that researchers conduct and publish.Second are the reviews of those studies that summarize and offer new interpretations built from and often extending beyond the primary studies.
Given the value-laden nature of some social science research [e.g., educational reform; immigration control], argumentative approaches to analyzing the literature can be a legitimate and important form of discourse.The body of literature includes all studies that address related or identical hypotheses or research problems.A well-done integrative review meets the same standards as primary research in regard to clarity, rigor, and replication.This is the most common form of review in the social sciences.Historical Review Few things rest in isolation from historical precedent.Often this form is used to help establish a lack of appropriate theories or reveal that current theories are inadequate for explaining new or emerging research problems. Use the exercise of reviewing the literature to examine how authors in your discipline or area of interest have composed their literature review sections.The unit of analysis can focus on a theoretical concept or a whole theory or framework. Problem formulation -- which topic or field is being examined and what are its component issues? Literature search -- finding materials relevant to the subject being explored. Data evaluation -- determining which literature makes a significant contribution to the understanding of the topic. Analysis and interpretation -- discussing the findings and conclusions of pertinent literature. What types of sources should I review (books, journal articles, websites; scholarly versus popular sources)? Should I summarize, synthesize, or critique sources by discussing a common theme or issue? Read them to get a sense of the types of themes you might want to look for in your own research or to identify ways to organize your final review.those of theory, substantive fields, research approaches, and data collection and analysis techniques], how researchers draw upon a wide variety of knowledge ranging from the conceptual level to practical documents for use in fieldwork in the areas of ontological and epistemological consideration, quantitative and qualitative integration, sampling, interviewing, data collection, and data analysis.This approach helps highlight ethical issues which you should be aware of and consider as you go through your own study.For graduate students working on a thesis, the most important resource is your graduate committee chair.Also, if you are an ILR student, don't forget to speak with one of Catherwood's reference librarians.