Thesis Writing: Review on Related Litirature Essay


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Guidelines in Citing Related Literature and Studies

A. Characteristics of the Materials Cited

The following are the characteristics of related literature and studies that should be cited: (Repeated for emphasis)

1. The materials must be as recent as possible. This is important because of the rapid social, political, scientific, and technological changes. Discoveries in historical and archaeological research have also changed some historical facts. Researchers in education and psychology are also making great strides. So, finding fifteen years ago may have little value today unless the study is a comparative inquiry about the past and the present. Mathematical and statistical procedures, however, are a little more stable.

2. Materials must be as objective and unbiased as possible. Some materials are extremely one sided, either politically or religiously biased. These should be avoided.

3. Materials must be relevant to the study. Only materials that have some military to or bearing on the problem researched on should be cited.

4. Materials must not too few but not too many. They must be sufficient enough to give the researcher insight into his problem or to indicate the nature of the present investigation. The number may also depend upon the availability of related materials. This is especially a problem with pioneering studies. Naturally, there are few related materials or even none at all. Ordinarily, from fifteen to twenty-five may do for a master’s thesis and from twenty and above for a doctoral dissertation, depending upon their availability and depth and length of discussions. The numbers, however, are only suggestive but not imperative. These are only the usual numbers observed in theses and dissertations surveyed. For an undergraduate thesis about ten may do.

B. Ways of Citing Related Literature and Studies

The following are the ways of citing related literature and studies:

1. By author or writer. In this method the ideas, facts, or principles, although they have the same meaning, are explained or discussed separately and cited in the footnote with their respective authors or writers. Examples: According to Enriquez, praise helps much in learning, etc., (Enriquez, 1981) Maglaque found out that praise is an important factor in learning, etc., (Maglaque, 1984)

2. By topic. In this case, if different authors or writers have the same opinion about the same topic, the topic is discussed and cited under the names of the authors or writers. This is a summary of their opinions. This is to avoid separate and long discussions of the same topic.

Example: It has been found out that praise is an important aid in learning of children. (Enriquez, 1981)

3. Chronological. Related materials may also be cited chronologically, that is, according to the year they were written. Materials which were written earlier should be cited first before those which were written later. This can be done especially when citation is by author or writer. If citation is by topic, chronological citation can be done in the footnote.

C. What to Cite

It should be emphasized that only the major findings, ideas, generalizations, principles, or conclusions in related materials relevant to the problem under investigation should be discussed in this chapter. Generally, such findings, ideas, generalizations, principles, or conclusions are summarized, paraphrased, or synthesized.

D. Quoting a Material

A material may be quoted if the idea conveyed is so perfectly stated or it is controversial and it is not too long. It is written single spaced with wider margins at the left and right sides of the paper but without any quotation marks.

Example: Suppose the following is a quotation: Said Enriquez, Praise is an important factor in children’s learning. It encourages them to study their lessons harder. Praise, however, should be given appropriately.

Justification of the Study

It should be made clear that there is no duplication of other studies. The present inquiry may only be a replication of another study. It should be stressed also that in spite of similar studies, the present study is still necessary to find out if the findings of studies in other places are also true in the locale of the present study. There may also be a need to continue with the present investigation to affirm or negate the findings of other inquiries about the same research problem or topic so that generalization or principles may be formulated. These generalizations and principles would be the contributions of the present investigation together with other studies to the fund of knowledge. This is one of the more important purposes of research: the contribution that it can give to the fund of knowledge.


It should be emphasized in this area that the major findings, ideas, generalizations, principles or conclusions in related materials relevant to the problem under investigation. Generally, such findings, ideas, generalizations, principles or conclusions are summarized, paraphrased, or synthesized.

Written by:

Prof. Erwin M. Globio
Thesis/Dissertation Adviser/Consultant
Mobile: 09393741359 / 09323956678

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