Literature Review

Ideas from discussion

  1. 1st and 2nd articles
    1. Cite first literature review in the second article. Make first health and second scrawny. Briefly summarize and cite
    2. Ask committee
    3. Look at Charles what he’s done in similar situations. (Impact I and II.)

Writing Plan

  1. Possible sources of literature
    1. Top articles discussed in Phase I – I think these will be especially useful in the discussion/data analysis section. I don’t think they’ll be as useful in the traditional lit review section of the paper. There are a few that are seminal, but most of those were used in the Phase I review. It will be good to go through them again to make sure nothing important is left out. – We’ll look through our top lists again, as well as those tagged for review to pull out any that seem important (e.g. reviewing an entire region etc.). It might be easiest for me to do this part, but I wonder if it would be more beneficial for us each take a piece, so that we can get some new insights.
    2. My focus in this paper is in the current state of BL. My previous search left out most new articles because it was looking for only the most cited. I have a Google Scholar alert set up for new articles on BL/HL and will look through those for anything that take an overview of the current state. This will give us more information on things that have happened recently. This would also probably work best for each author to take some and look for possible places that will be useful.
    3. Broaden the scope – international online learning, blended learning in general, “qualitative” instead of semi-structured etc.
    4. Look at people citing the most relevant articles – and the references that those articles use.
    5. I know that in a full literature review paper it is important to be systematic. Is that necessary or reasonable for just a literature review section of an article? I don’t think I’ve seen methods etc. in those before. – People want to know what literature you review, but you need to do it briefly. The reviewers might come back and you’ll want to have answers for them. Can just cite someone with good instructions and say that you did them.
    6. Can but in order chronologically, or by ideas, etc.
    7. Discoverer vs. Explorer – “I’ve reviewed the literature and it doesn’t address the stuff I want to discover”. This wouldn’t make sense if you were in an area where there was a lot. Else, you might rediscover something.
  2. Other Writing Updates
    1. Necessary updates to reflect changes in plans, additional authors etc. have been noted in my draft. I was originally planning on splitting these up among the research team, but I think it will be most efficient to make the changes myself, and then ask my co-authors to review them and bring up questions/things I have missed etc.
    2. I have a subjectivity statement in my current pre-draft. Should each author have one? Is it very common to have them in the final papers?

Gibson, W. J., & Brown, A. (2009). Working with Qualitative Data. London: SAGE.

  1. Types of Literature Searches
    1. Exploratory – map out a general area of research
      1. Good to:
        1. gain understanding of theoretical/empirical field – I think this might be most like what I need to accomplish.
        2. understand the ways an empirical field has been theorized – This could be useful too. Are lit reviews meant to be about the subject matter (blended learning) or about your methods (semi-structured interviews) or do you break them up among the different parts of your paper?
        3. the work of an author or authors
        4. develop a sense of the method debates in an area
      2. Not always appropriate for research projects, because they are not focused enough.
    2. Focused – directed towards answer particular question in relation to published literature
      1. focal areas (looking for studies that fit into as many of these as possible, but there will be very few if any that match all):
        1. asking the same kinds of questions – a big list of those
        2. using the same kinds of research designs
        3. using the same kinds of methods – survey (open and closed questions), semi-structured interviews
        4. using similar theoretical frames – narrative?
        5. operating in a similar empirical domain – post positivist
      2. Purpose
        1. to figure out the theoretical/methodological contributions that the proposed study makes to the field – the Gap, very important. I think my gap needs to be stronger.
        2. To figure out what is already known about a given empirical area
        3. We are looking for a study that is exactly like ours, which helps us ask these questions about our own research.
      3. Questions
        1. How do you decide which are the most important?
        2. Any tips for searching based on methods rather than subject?
        3. What is the difference between a research design and a method?
    3. Systematic – like a meta analysis
  2. Conducting literature searches
    1. Should be conducted using several tools and searches – selected because of coverage and fit
    2. Steps
      1. Divide questions into concepts – like blended learning, international (except that probably isn’t the best word, it’s not about the “inter” but about the “exter”, outside of North America)
      2. I’ve already done a very complicated literature review, how can I tie this into this phase of the research?
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