Literature Review Source Grid Instructions

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Literature Review Source Grid Instructions

This grid offers you a simple way to begin to connect and categorize the sources you have found so far.


  1. Write your project question in the space provided at the top of your grid.


  1. Using the UA CON DNP Standard Literature Grid, compare and contrast the sources on your list. Do any of them fall into the same “camp” or category? Within a particular category or camp, what distinguishes different authors or studies from one another? Do some of them contradict or put into question others? extend another’s hypothesis? or limit it?

In the first column of the Resource Grid, identify the categories of sources relevant to your project question.


  1. In the third column, list the type of study.


  1. In the fourth column, list the main argument(s)/theories/hypotheses of each source. This is not an easy step, but it might be the most important one; working carefully to identify the authors’ arguments in this step can make synthesizing material much easier later on.


  1. In the fifth column, list counterevidence against the main argument(s)/theories /hypotheses that exist. You may have found articles that refute the arguments proposed by the authors of the sources. Identifying sources and authors that disagree with the main argument will assist you as you synthesize the evidence.


  1. In the fifth column, list your thoughts about the arguments, the evidence and the counterevidence. How does the evidence/counterevidence support your project question? List any comments or questions that you have about each source.


  1. Once you have completed the grid, try to answer the following questions:


  1. What conclusions can you list based on the available literature?


  1. What gaps are there in the current literature (what other studies are needed)?


  1. In the literature, what findings do not line up with your project?


  1. After this literature search, what do you need to know that you do not know?


  1. Are there items that are underdeveloped? If there are few sources in an area, ask why. Is this a newer area of inquiry? Do you need to look more broadly for sources? Do you need to expand your topic for literature?


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