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Week 5 discussion
DQ1 Developing Categories for the Literature Review
Here are lots of resources to help students understand the
Literature Review. Please browse these resources and then complete the
discussion post below.
The article by Ted Zorn and Nittaya Campbell,
“Improving the Writing of Literature Reviews through Literature
Integration Exercise” — this article is available in the e-reserves
section of this class (and for those of you in the Week 4 Face-to-Face class I
handed this out). To access the article,
please take the following steps:
click Content
select Class Resources
select eReserves
select the icon for eReserves in the middle of your page.
in the list of items that appears, locate this article and
download it.
The tutorial from The University of North Carolina on
writing literature reviews. It is linked
to at the top of the Content for this week.
The tutorial from UMUC’s Effective Writing Center on writing
the literature review. It is linked to at
the top of the Content for this week.
After reviewing the material on the Literature Review posted
above, please return to your annotated bibliography and begin developing
“categories” to help you to organize your sources. Post one category
below and list several sources that might fill that category. Remember that
some sources may fall into more than one category.
Please respond generously to at least one of your fellow
classmates using 1+1 feedback format of providing one compliment on an aspect
of the post that is strong or noteworthy and why and providing one suggestion
on how the content in the post could be stronger perhaps in some way with the
possible themes the student is brainstorming about their topic.

DQ2 Visual Mapping — Applying the Spider Diagram
You can use a “ Spider Diagram” to help you to structure
your discussion of sources in The Literature Review as well as to brainstorm
the niches and gaps in the research literature. A spider diagram is a visual
tool usually used for planning your writing. However, you can also use it for
evaluating and thinking about a topic in detail.

NOTE: Embedded here below are some excellent examples of
previous Spider Diagrams for a boost.
Sample Student Spidergram
Print out your Literature Review notes and grab a blank
piece of paper.
For more information on the Spider Diagram, please visit the
link at the top of this week’s Content, Spider Diagrams: How and Why They Work.
Task :
Write your idea/title/topic/thesis in the center of a piece
of paper. Draw a circle around it. For
the purposes of this exercise, you will use the topic of your Literature
Draw a “leg” from the central “body” of
your Literature Review topic towards the top right hand corner of the page.
Label this “leg” with the first topic/category that you dealt with in
your Review.
Add more legs moving clockwise around the page until all the
sections have been included, with the final one being somewhere near the top
left of the page.
Now divide each “leg” up into smaller
“legs” with all the points that you made in each section. (Again work
clockwise from the top left so that the sequence of ideas is maintained).
Finally, please be sure that one section is devoted to
identifying any gaps or niches in the research literature in your synthesis of
sources essay (literature review), or WA#3.
You may have to redraw your spider diagram several times
until you find a structure that works for you. Make sure that you find a
proposal structure that suits the needs of your Niches and Gaps paper. Please
post your spider diagram below.
Respond to this discussion topic with one paragraph
describing how this task might have helped you or why it did not help you in
organizing your thoughts for WA#3.

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