Writing Literature Reviews : A Guide for Students of the Social and Behavioral Sciences book cover
7th Edition

Writing Literature Reviews
A Guide for Students of the Social and Behavioral Sciences

ISBN 9780415315746
Published April 5, 2017 by Routledge
308 Pages

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Book Description

This useful guide educates students in the preparation of literature reviews for term projects, theses, and dissertations. The authors provide numerous examples from published reviews that illustrate the guidelines discussed throughout the book.


New to the seventh edition:


  • Each chapter breaks down the larger holistic review of literature exercise into a series of smaller, manageable steps
  • Practical instructions for navigating today’s digital libraries
  • Comprehensive discussions about digital tools, including bibliographic and plagiarism detection software
  • Chapter activities that reflect the book’s updated content
  • New model literature reviews
  • Online resources designed to help instructors plan and teach their courses (www.routledge.com/9780415315746).

Table of Contents

Preface; Part I: Managing The Literature Search; 1. Writing Reviews of Academic Literature: An Overview 2. Learn to Navigate the Electronic Resources in Your University’s Library 3. Selecting a Topic for Your Review 4. Organizing Yourself to Begin the Selection of Relevant Titles; Part II: Analyzing The Relevant Literature; 5. Conduct a Deep Analysis of the Articles 6. Analyzing Quantitative Research Literature 7. Analyzing Qualitative Research Literature 8. Organizing Your Notes by Grouping the Results of Your Analysis; Part III: Writing The First Draft Of Your Literature Review; 9. Synthesizing Trends and Patterns: Preparing to Write 10. Guidelines for Writing a First Draft 11. Guidelines for Developing a Coherent Essay; Part IV: Editing And Preparing The Final Draft Of Your Review; 12. Guidelines for Editing Your Essay 13. Preparing a Reference List; Appendix A: Comprehensive Checklist; Appendix B: Sample Literature Reviews

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Jose L. Galvan (Ph.D., 1980, UT Austin) is Professor Emeritus at California State University, Los Angeles.  His academic career spans 39 years, including appointments at UCLA; Teachers College, Columbia University; California State University, Los Angeles; and San Francisco State University.

Melisa C. Galvan (Ph.D., 2013, UC Berkeley) is Assistant Professor at California State University, Northridge.


Excellent. A concise, ‘task analytic’ presentation of the complex steps necessary in writing literature reviews.

Tom Cooke, Sonoma State University

This is an excellent text for teaching both reading research literature and writing literature reviews.

Marilyn Meisenheimer, Bemidji State University

A wonderful step-by-step guide to the writing process. This book has an invaluable checklist for students who are writing literature reviews.

Peter J. Burke, Edgewood College

Literature reviews are high stressors for even the most accomplished students. This text greatly alleviates their anxiety with clarity, organization, examples, and easy-to-understand ‘How to’ tips. I won’t teach research without it!

John O’Kane, Roberts Wesleyan College

Exceptional book—the only one in the field that actually helps students do the review and succeed at it.

Debra Mosek, University of Kentucky

This text is a masterpiece, carefully and thoughtfully crafted for both undergraduate and graduate students.

Ephraim Okoro, Howard University