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Phase 2 Objectives
Phase 2: Research Proposal & Literature Review Objectives:
Your group will be responsible for:
- Developing a research proposal that includes the following:
- Brief Introduction
- Literature Review (including a minimum of 10 journal articles reviewed)
- Definition of the purpose of your research and the research objectives
- Refined research questions
- Development of a data collection instrument
Literature Review Components
A literature review is NOT a summary of your readings, but rather an evaluation that allows you to explain how it applies to your research questions or supports your thesis statement. Steps in the literature review process include:
- Selecting a topic & Developing your argument
- Researching the literature
- Reviewing & Critiquing the literature
- Tracking your citations & quotes
- Writing your review
As you review the literature, ask yourself questions such as:
- What do we know about the subject of our study and its historical context?
- Are there trends being found as a result of our readings?
- Are there gaps to be found in the literature?
- Based on what we know, what conclusions can we draw about our research question?
Literature reviews generally include:
- Methodology: The discussion of your search strategy and databases used when locating your sources
- Observations of the research methods used within your found sources
- Revelations found within your sources that speak to your research questions as well as opposing statements
- Interpretations of research gaps in the literature that help to formulate questions that need further research
- Reflection of conclusions drawn
Literature Review Research Databases
General & Business-Specific Databases
*Academic Search Premier
A comprehensive index to scholarly journals and general periodicals in all subject and interdisciplinary areas, including full text.
*Business Source Complete
Includes full-text from scholarly journals and trade magazines covering all areas of business with case studies included. Provides MarketLine company profiles for international, private (some), and public companies.
Citations and abstracts from over 980 educational and education-related journals, as well as full text of more than 2,200 digests.
CQ Researcher: Business & Economics
Browse detailed reports by business topics including advertising, consumer behavior, economic crisis and development, manufacturing and industrial production, small business, and more.
Credo Reference: Business & Accounting Topic Pages
Browse topic pages with current information on a variety of business and accounting topics.
EBSCO Management Collection
Designed to meet the diverse information needs of today’s companies, this database contains full text articles from nearly 1,350 quality magazines and journals.
EBSCO databases marked with an asterisk (*) can be searched at the same time. Open Academic Search Premier and locate the Choose Databases link found right above the search box. Place checks next to the databases starred here and click OK.
Provides full-text to articles from major US newspapers, international newspapers and other journals and magazines.
Regional Business News
Includes full-text coverage for regional business publications. Incorporates coverage of 75 business journals, newspapers & newswires from U.S. urban & rural areas.
A collection of news, business, and law related information. Shortcuts to Hoover's Company Profiles and Hoover's Basic Company Reports are also included.
Newspaper Source Plus* This link opens in a new window
Provides selected full text for 25 national (U.S.) and international newspapers.
Evaluating the Literature to Draw Conclusions
When Reading Each of Your Sources:
- Skim the abstract to determine if it's truly relevant to your topic.
- If you find it is relevant, read the article for a general understanding.
- Read a second time to summarize and evaluate the source while taking notes using some of the prompts below.
Keep in mind you should include sources that challenge and/or contradict your research question. Doing so will allow you to explain why your approach is still justified.
When Summarizing Consider:
- Purpose of the writing
- Problem explained
- Research questions included
- Research methodology
- Sample included
- Key findings
When Evaluating Consider:
- Key theories, concepts, or ideas mentioned
- Major debates, arguments, or issues mentioned
- Methodology and whether it is appropriate for the research topic and if it was conducted properly
- Evidence of claims or conclusions
- Key questions and problems addressed
- Gaps or insufficiently addressed issues
- Implications for your proposed research