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Health Sciences Literature Reviews Made Easy

Writing a literature review for a health science topic can be difficult if you do not know how to do one. Paper Masters shows you have to compose a lit review on any topic you need explored for your nursing, medical health or health sciences course.

As a general guideline, when writing a literature review, give a lot of thought to the key words, phrases, and controlled vocabulary that you plan to use to locate articles and other documents for your literature review. Type your chosen topic at the top of the page on which you will write the list of search key words. Give the complete reference entries in APA style, identify in which articles they were found, and confirm that you can readily access them.

Begin with a brief introduction before jumping right into the literature review. State the overall area of concern (populations-at-risk for injustice or discrimination; need for more functional affiliations for individuals and groups; unethical policies/practices; lack of knowledge in the field, etc.). Arouse the reader’s interest; tell the reader what to expect in the rest of your paper.  Provide brief statistics to indicate the incidence of the problem.

How to go about doing a Literature Review

Health Sciences Literature Reviews Made EasyA review of the literature reveals that considerable attention in the research has been directed at investigating the health sciences. A review of the literature also reveals a marked interest in the health issue being investigated as well as in the need for future research in a specific area. A systematic review is typically viewed in the health sciences as the most objective—that is, rigorous, transparent, and reproducible —method for summarizing the results of research. Yet, recent scholarship has shown systematic reviews tend to involve feats of interpretation producing less certain, albeit valuable, results.

You need to summarize what existing literature has to say about your problem and the existing solutions:

  1. What has been tried by medical health professionals
  2. What has worked in the medical health field
  3. What has not worked medically
  4. Why various options have not worked

As you begin, you need to share your theory base with the readers so they understand how what you are presenting is influenced by that theory base. As you read articles on your topic look for what other authors have to say about a theoretical framework for understand the problem and pointing a direction for solutions.

This section should flow from past to present.  What where the earliest interventions or solutions?  What are the most recent?  Be sure to present all sides whether or not they agree with your hypothesis.  Your research will typically involve some gap in information (why research what we already know?). 

After you present what is already known, make your case for your research either answering a new question, getting a new answer to an old question, answering a question about a new population, etc. After you have made your case that your research is going to give new information, you will summarize the major points.  Finally,  you will formulate (in the last sentence) your research question or your hypothesis.


Related Research Paper Topics

HIPAA Literature Review - Since HIPAA legislation was first proposed, the reactions in the published literature on the subject have varied widely.

Hypertension Literature Review - Hypertension Literature Review examines recent peer reviewed publications regarding the disease Hypertension.