Author: Águeda Delgado – Translation: Erika-Lucia Gonzalez-Carrion|

The first task that a researcher who wants to do a good job must carry out is reading. Even before choosing a research topic, reading is essential to keep up to date with new and current topics. Reading impact journals (JCR, Scopus) or conference proceedings can provide an overview of the studies being developed in our field of research and help us to identify problems that can be addressed.

In addition, once the research topic has been chosen, it is necessary to conduct a literature review to support our work. “If I have been able to see farther, it is because I have stood on the shoulders of giants,” Newton said. It is important to start from what has already been done and studied in order to go further. This literature review will help us to determine what has been studied and what has not, to obtain different points of view on the same subject, to acquire specific and technical vocabulary, to learn different methodologies to approach the object of study, to become familiar with different techniques and to evaluate the results obtained in other works and contrast them.

Thus, we must first identify the topics of our research in order to be able to carry out a proper search (see the entry on search by topics), opting for papers published in first level journals and, from there, going down. Normally, some articles will lead us to others from their citations and we will be able to get a broad overview of the research topic.

For more information on how to write a good literature review click here.

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