Literature Review as a Chapter of a Standard Research Paper

Researchers can approach this kind of paper from different perspectives. There is no specific approach or model to be followed in each study as such decisions depend on numerous circumstances. All research activities are always undertaken based on what is already known. However, how to proceed depends on numerous factors, such as whether it is a case study, ethnographic study, an investigation grounded on theory, or other aspects.

Any successful project must have a plan, and a literature review chapter is no exception. Researchers should deliberately and strategically design how to examine the works of literature. Therefore, never expect to score excellently if you approach this chapter without a proper strategy.

A literature review chapter has three main sections: introduction, body, and chapter summary/conclusion. We will begin by learning how to write the introduction part of the paper. In our case, we will use a thematic approach to discuss how to write a compelling literature review.


The introduction part of a literature review chapter establishes the background, scope, context, and significance of the review. In this paper, researchers should summarize their understanding of the issue under review, starting from a broader to a narrower perspective. Further, establishing the research area is crucial because it familiarizes the audience with what is already known about the topic area. In addition, indicate the importance of studying the topic by giving an appropriate context. Mention how the articles will be searched by listing the keywords, databases, etc.


Start each paragraph by identifying the topic. Take a general approach when discussing how works of literature have presented specific issues being discussed. For example, we might say that:

“Recent studies on the Internet of Things (IoT) have largely demonstrated that embedding physical objects requires efficient data transfer. For example, Yang and Kim (2019) argue that since the technology entails the transfer of large quantities of data, IT experts should develop robust and efficient sensor systems to link objects to the cloud. The discovery reveals that sensors play a key role in developing a reliable IoT system. However, in this 2019 study, the researchers rely on a single case study project. The approach demonstrates a lack of scientific rigor and minimal basis for generalization. Specifically, replicating the study outcomes to larger populations might lead to misleading results.”

The preceding paragraph has critical elements needed to develop a literature review: For example, the writer:

The short sample paragraph contains minimum elements. However, writers can develop paragraphs in different ways. They may compare, link, or relate critical findings from different authors.

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