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AAE 780: Research Colloquium (Spring 2024) : Home

Troubleshooting Access

Off-Campus Access to Online Library Resources

  • Remote Access Bookmarklet
    The bookmarklet enables you to log in to our off-campus authentication service without having to start from the Libraries’ site. This can be particularly useful for accessing full-text articles from email alert links.

Contact the Library Technology Group for additional technical assistance.

Library Resources for Preparing and Writing Your Review of the Literature

What does a literature review do or achieve (broadly speaking)? It should...

  • Set the context for the study, demarcate the scope of the investigation, and provide a justification for those decisions.
  • Situate the literature in scholarly/historial context.
  • Report the claims made in the existing literature.
  • Examine the research methods used.
  • Distinguish what has been learned and accomplished in the area of study from what still needs to be learned and accomplished.
  • Summarize and synthesize the existing literature in a way that permits a new perspective.

"Literature Reviews in the Sciences", Libraries' Micro-Course
An overview developed in collaboration with the campus Writing Center.

Evidence Synthesis and Systematic Reviews

Evidence synthesis (including systematic reviews and other review types within the systematic review family) is a form of literature review. Like all literature reviews, evidence synthesis projects involve collecting previously published information and reading, evaluating, and aggregating the information. Unlike traditional narrative literature reviews, however, evidence synthesis projects involve the following: 

  • Answers a research question by synthesizing information from previously published information either qualitatively, quantitatively, or with mixed methods, using methodological and statistical tools to do so; 
  • Requires a highly regimented, exhaustive, and documented literature search process, intended to be transparent and replicable by others, as part of the overall research methodology; and
  • Uses a priori inclusion and exclusion criteria to select the articles used in the review. This process is also part of its research methodology.

Support services through our campus libraries for these review types.

Dissertation Research and Evidence Synthesis

While a full systematic review may not necessarily satisfy criteria for dissertation research in a discipline (as independent scholarship), the methods described in the libraries' guide to evidence synthesis & systematic reviews can help to ensure that your review of the literature is comprehensive, transparent, and reproducible.

In this context, your review type, then, may be better described as a 'structured literature review', a 'systematized search and review', or as a 'systematized scoping (or integrative or mapping) review'.

Steenbock Librarian

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Karen Dunn
Steenbock Library;
Science & Engineering Libraries (SEL)

I am happy to schedule consultations!

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How can I use AI responsibly?

It is all about transparency! If using AI tools during any phase of your review process, it will be essential to disclose, when writing your protocol and final manuscript, how and when you will have used any tool--whether it be for helping you to generate search terms and search syntax, for screening records, or for generating text in the manuscript.