Carnegie Mellon University

Related Work / Literature Review / Research Review

A literature review, research review, or related work section compares, contrasts, synthesizes, and provides introspection about the available knowledge for a given topic or field. The two terms are sometimes used interchangeably (as they are here), but while both can refer to a section of a longer work, “literature review” can also describe a stand-alone paper.

When you start writing a literature review, the most straightforward course may be to compile all relevant sources and compare them, perhaps evaluating their strengths and weaknesses. While this is a good place to start, your literature review is incomplete unless it creates something new through these comparisons. Luckily, our resources can help you do this!

With these resources, you’ll learn:

  • How to write a literature review that contributes rather than summarizes
  • Common mistakes to avoid
  • Useful phrases to show agreement and disagreement between sources

To see these strategies in action, click the link in the sidebar to watch the video or view, download, and print the PDF.

Need one-on-one help with your literature review or research article? Schedule an appointment with one of our consultants now!

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