Reviewing the research literature strategically in qualitative research
Department of Conflict Resolution Studies
Journal of Ethnographic & Qualitative Research
ISSN or ISBN
Reviewing literature in qualitative research can be challenging in terms of why, when, where, and how we should access third-party sources in our work, especially for novice qualitative researchers. As a pragmatic solution, we suggest qualitative researchers utilize research literature in four functional ways: (a) define the phenomenon in question, (b) identify the research gap situating the study, (c) support the author's methodological choices, and (d) compare and contrast what was learned through the study's results with what was previously known and not known about the phenomenon. As qualitative research journal editors, we offer this guidance to novice qualitative researchers conducting and reporting qualitative research as well as to professors and individuals reviewing qualitative study reports.
Chenail, Ronald J.; Cooper, Robin; and Desir, C., "Reviewing the research literature strategically in qualitative research" (2010). CAHSS Faculty Articles. 334.