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CEE 700 Research Methods (James): Writing and Editing

Resources for students in CEE 700

Tips and Possible Process Steps to Conduct a Literature Review

When a large number of items are to be considered in a literature review, it is useful to develop an annotated bibliography as a first step.  This can take the form of a list, or as a set of paragraphs that describe each reviewed item one at a time.  This process can help you to see patterns within the published literature, and provide a good format to demonstrate gaps in the literature. 


A literature review section of a scientific paper or technical report summarizes and describes the relevant publications on your topic, to set the foundation for what new insights or data your research will provide. In some cases, as in a thesis, you may need to provide a longer and more exhaustive literature review to demonstrate to your committee that you have done the reading to become a credentialed expert in your new field.  On occasion a funding agency may request a substantial review of the literature as a deliverable. It is important to understand the purpose of your literature review to know when enough items have been included (there is no magic number).

Types of Literature Reviews

Predatory Publishers-Beware!

Writing Resources for Engineers

Writing Groups

Forming or joining a writing group can be a useful way to get feedback on your writing or your writing process.  A writing group can also provide extra accountability for your writing process, as others will be aware if you aren't on track to complete your project.

There is a registered student organization for writers as well, the Student Academic Authors at UNLV . 

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