Types of Review of Literature in Research Methodology


Literature reviews can take several different forms, depending on their purpose and the context in which they are conducted. Here are some Types of Review of Literature in Research Methodology:

Types of Review of Literature in Research Methodology

1. Narrative Literature Review: This is the most common type of literature review and involves a comprehensive and systematic summary of the available literature on a particular topic. It provides an overview of key concepts, theories, and      findings from various sources. Narrative reviews are often usthe early stages of research to establish a solid understanding of the field.

2. Systematic Literature Review: A systematic review is a rigorous and structured approac6h to reviewing the literature. It follows a specific methodology that includes defined search criteria, inclusion and exclusion criteria, and a systematic analysis of the selected studies. Systematic reviews are often used to answer specific research questions and provide a synthesis of the best available evidence.

3. Meta-Analysis: A meta-analysis is a specific type of systematic review that involves quantitatively analyzing and synthesizing data from multiple studies to derive more robust statistical conclusions. Meta-analyses are commonly used in the medical and social sciences to pool data from multiple studies to draw more significant conclusions.

4. Scoping Review: A scoping review is a type of literature review designed to map the existing literature on a broad topic. It is often used when the research question is still evolving or when there is a need to understand the breadth and depth of available literature. Scoping reviews provide an overview of the key themes and gaps in the literature.

5. Critical Review: A critical review goes beyond summarizing the literature; it involves a critical analysis and evaluation of the strengths and weaknesses of the studies included in the review. Critical reviews assess the quality of the research and the validity of the findings, and they may offer suggestions for further research or methodological improvements.

6. Integrative Review: An integrative review synthesizes diverse sources of evidence, such as quantitative and qualitative studies, to provide a more comprehensive understanding of a research topic. It aims to integrate findings from various types of research to offer a holistic perspective.

7. Conceptual Review: A conceptual review focuses on exploring and defining key concepts, theories, and frameworks in a particular field. It may not necessarily be based on a systematic search for existing literature but rather on the theoretical development and conceptual analysis.

8. Historical Review: This type of review examines the historical development of a particular field of study. It traces the evolution of ideas, theories, and research over time, providing a historical context for the current state of knowledge.

9. Theoretical Review: A theoretical review focuses on the development and critique of theoretical frameworks in a particular area of research. It explores the evolution of theories and their application in the field.

10. Policy Review: A policy review focuses on analyzing and evaluating existing policies, regulations, or guidelines related to a specific issue. It often involves assessing the effectiveness of policies and their impact on the problem they aim to address.

The choice of which type of literature review to conduct depends on the research question, the research objectives, and the field of study. Researchers select the most appropriate type of review to best address their specific needs and goals.


Organizing related literature and using a matrix method in literature reviews are effective ways to synthesize and present the information you gather from various sources. These methods help you visually compare and contrast different studies, identify patterns, and draw connections between them. Here's how to organize related literature and use a matrix method:

Organizing Related Literature:

  1. Select and Collect Sources: Start by collecting relevant sources based on your research question or topic. This can include academic papers, books, articles, and other scholarly materials. Keep detailed records of your sources, including publication information, to create proper citations.

  2. Annotate Sources: As you read each source, make detailed notes and annotations. Highlight key points, methodologies, findings, and any important quotations. This will help you later when summarizing and synthesizing the literature.

  3. Categorize the Literature: Organize the sources into categories or themes that are relevant to your research question. These categories can be based on key concepts, subtopics, or other relevant criteria.

  4. Create an Outline: Develop an outline or a structure for your literature review. This outline should follow a logical flow and include sections or headings that correspond to the categories you've created. Common sections include introduction, methodology, key findings, and discussion.

Matrix Method of Literature Review:

The matrix method involves creating a visual tool, often in the form of a table or matrix, to help you organize and compare information from different sources.

  1. Create the Matrix: Start by creating a table with rows and columns. Rows typically represent the different sources you're reviewing, while columns represent key information categories or themes you want to compare.

  2. Identify Information Categories: Determine what information you want to compare across your sources. Common categories may include author, publication year, research methods, key findings, strengths, weaknesses, and relevance to your research question.

  3. Fill in the Matrix: For each source, fill in the relevant information in the corresponding cells of the matrix. This allows you to easily compare and contrast the sources on different criteria.

  4. Analyze and Synthesize: Once you have filled in the matrix, analyze the information to identify patterns, themes, and gaps in the literature. You can use this analysis to create a narrative in your literature review that synthesizes the findings and insights from the sources.

    The matrix method allows you to easily compare and contrast the characteristics of different sources, helping you to identify trends and gaps in the literature.

    After organizing your related literature and using the matrix method, you can write a comprehensive literature review that synthesizes the information, highlights key findings, and provides insights into your research topic.  



Ques1: How do I choose the sources for my literature review?

Ans: Select sources that are relevant to your research topic and objectives. Academic journals, books, reputable websites, and research papers are common sources. Ensure they are recent and from credible authors or institutions.

Ques2: What is the difference between a literature review and an annotated bibliography?

Ans: A literature review synthesizes and analyzes existing research on a topic, while an annotated bibliography provides a list of sources with brief summaries. A literature review offers a more comprehensive analysis of the literature.

Ques3: How do I organize the sources in a literature review?

Ans: Sources can be organized thematically, chronologically, methodologically, or by key concepts. The choice of organization depends on your research question and the nature of the literature.

Ques4: What is the difference between a systematic review and a narrative review?

Ans: A systematic review follows a strict and systematic methodology for searching, selecting, and analyzing the literature. It often includes meta-analysis. A narrative review is a more general, descriptive summary of the literature.










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