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Workshop for McNair Summer Program

Reading Checklist

  • What do I know about this topic?
  • What should I read in order to develop an appropriate question?
  • What is the question I am trying to answer?
  • Why does my question needed to be answered?
  • What theory or theories will inform my study?
  • What do I need to read to design or apply my methods?
  • What research has already been conducted in this area that will inform my review?


The production of knowledge

What is the goal for research?  The production of knowledge


Why reading is Important

  1. Explore a topic
  2. Developing a research question
  3. Articulating a rationale for the research
  4. Informing your study with theory
  5. Designing Methods
  6. Writing a Literature Review

Types of literature

  • Reference materials - use these to define and explain  jargon and unfamiliar concepts. A great source to get you into statistics.
  • Books- Use this for background reading and covering "classic" material
  • Book chapters
  • Journal articles- look here for the research of others. What are their methods, data sources,  and unanswered questions?
  • Grey literature- what are the conferences talking about your topic. Did you look for dissertations and theses
  • Government publications & statistics
  • Primary sources
  • Secondary sources


Finding the relationships

Literature review process reading writing  searching------

Taken from The Literature Review: A Step-by-Step Guide for Students by Diana Ridley 

p. 81