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MGN442 Literature Review Report Assignment 1 Answer

MGN442 Assignment 1 Literature Review / Report

Task Description

For this assignment you will need to conduct a literature review where you critically analyse and synthesise theories/concepts/models from the broader  self-leadership  or positive  psychology  literature. After identifying a specific topic, it is helpful if you also choose a context to explore that you are also interested in knowing more about. By combining the topic and the context you will be able to create a question to investigate. You will need to have chosen at least 10 sources to read, analyse and integrate into the review of your question.

What is a literature review?

A literature review is a critical evaluation of previously published literature or research. Through organising, integrating, analysing and synthesising previous works, the author of the literature review/research report  is able to consider the progress of the research towards clarifying a problem of interest. A literature review frequently defines and clarifies a research problem; summarises the current state of the research in a field; identifies relationships, contradictions, gaps and inconsistencies in the literature; and often suggests the next step towards solving the research problem.

Why is the literature review important?

The primary purpose of the literature review is to critique and analyse  previous  literature,  analysing  how and why previous research studies were conducted, and the conclusions that can be drawn  from  them.  It is not usually sufficient to merely cite, chronologically, a number of studies and their  relevant  findings.  The  author must show academic scholarship by organising the literature in an interesting and useful way. The value of the literature review is established through the author’s  ability  to  demonstrate  a  professional  grasp  on the research problem by summarising the background and current state of knowledge in the field. Thus the key elements of the literature review  include:  evaluating  the contributions  of others,  highlighting  research  trends in the field, identifying areas of theoretical and empirical weakness in the previously published material, and to clarify the research problem or identify specific research questions to be addressed.

Literature Review Research Activities

Research and Gathering Information: Begin the literature review process by identifying the research problem or theme of interest. Secondly, working back from new to old, from general to specific, seek out relevant academic and literature regarding the theme or problem previously identified. After gathering, sifting through, and analysing the information on the topic, focus or narrow the problem and generate hypotheses or research questions for future study. In management disciplines there are usually three primary sources of academic literature: refereed journals and major texts in the field.

For this assignment you will need to have reviewed at least ten (10) sources.

Reading and Analysing  Literature:  To write  the literature  review  you need to have  read a number  of articles to identify the facts? Who are the eminent scholars?  What  ideas,  theories,  questions,  or hypotheses  seem most important? When reading the literature, consider  what  developments,  controversies  or breakthroughs are currently being  proposed  by leading  researchers/practitioners.  What  are the most commonly  used research methodologies in the field? Is the methodology used the most appropriate or most useful?  To assist  with the analysis, some researchers build tables or charts of various studies to help systematically review research questions, methodologies, findings and limitations.

When reading the literature that you have gathered judge, evaluate and look critically at the research. The following questions are useful things to ask yourself about the literature you are reading. For example:

k Is the problem and theoretical basis clearly stated?

k Are the researchers aware of what others have done? (e.g., is the review complete?)

k  Is the author  telling  a “story” that makes sense?

k  What  are the assumptions  behind the research?

k  Is the methodology,  sample  size etc., adequate?

k Are the results accurately presented?

k Is the research influential (e.g., has it sparked research interest by others)?

k Is the argument convincing?

k Are the generalisations justified based upon the evidence presented?

k Are suggestions offered for further research?

Writing the Literature Review

The shape of an article: Similar to an academic essay, the literature review takes an hourglass shape. The review begins with general statements and progressively narrows towards a specific area of inquiry, then broadens out again to more general conclusions. As you approach the end of the literature review it is recommended that you summarise gaps/contradictions/debates in the field by introducing your own suggestions or questions for future research.

Rationale or purpose: Begin the literature review broadly by generating a rationale  or significance  for reviewing the literature. Identify the importance of the inquiry by placing the problem or issue in context so  that readers know why it is a significant field of investigation.

Critique and review of what is known and unknown about the topic: When reviewing previous work, it is important that you do not simply describe every study that has ever been  done  on the problem  or issue. Rather you need to be selective, only cite articles that are pertinent to the specific issues with which you are dealing. Emphasise the major conclusions, findings, or relevant methodological issues of these studies  and avoid unnecessary detail. As you progress  through  the review  and the logic  of the argument,  offer suggestions for future research. For instance, do further studies need to be conducted with different populations, were flaws identified in previous methodologies, could the  studies  be extended  or narrowed etc.?

Evaluate your literature review

  • Does it show thorough knowledge of the research, theory, concepts, ideology, and opinion?
  • Is the reader made aware that the review has been selective and are the criteria for selection and relevance explained?
  • Is there any critical assessment of the reviewed literature?
  • Does the review demonstrate a relationship between what others have previously done and the suggestions offered for future research or study?
  • Are transitions provided from one section to another?
  • Is there a final summary that clinches the need to do further study?

Conduct a self-assessment of your paper in ReView (see the Blackboard link)

  • The final step after submission of your paper is to conduct a ‘self-assessment’ of your writing using the Criterion Reference Assessment (CRA) through which your paper will be marked. Please go to ReView to conduct this self-assessment.

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