Review articles written by researchers are valuable tools for those looking for a synopsis of several research studies in one place without having to spend time finding the research and results themselves. A well-presented review paper provides the reader with unbiased information on studies within the discipline and presents why the results of some research studies are or are not valid. In addition, institutions that fund research tend to use review articles to help them decide whether further research is necessary; however, their value is only as good as the objectives achieved and how the results are communicated. Literature reviews are in great demand in most scientific fields. Given such mountains of papers, scientists cannot be expected to examine in detail every single new paper relevant to their interests. Thus, it is both advantageous and necessary to rely on regular summaries of the recent literature. Although recognition for scientists mainly comes from primary research, timely literature reviews can lead to new synthetic insights and are often widely read. For such summaries to be useful, however, they need to be compiled in a professional way.

 

Define a Topic and Audience

A good review usually concentrates on a theme, such as different theories, information on the progress of developing a new medical device, or how past developments influence new discoveries. A review might also ask that more resources be used to continue research in that specific field.

Ideas for potential reviews may come from papers providing lists of key research questions to be answered [9], but also from serendipitous moments during desultory reading and discussions. In addition to choosing your topic, you should also select a target audience. In many cases, the topic will automatically define an audience, but that same topic may also be of interest to neighboring fields.

The topic must at least be:

1.interesting to you (ideally, you should have come across a series of recent papers related to your line of work that calls for a critical summary),

2.an important aspect of the field (so that many readers will be interested in the review and there will be enough material to write it),

3.a well-defined issue (otherwise you could potentially include thousands of publications, which would make the review unhelpful).

Literature Searches

Previous reviews on the chosen theme using Google Scholar can provide information on any new findings, and the following points should be considered when conducting searches:

  1. The author and any possible conflicting interest
  2. The purpose of the article
  3. The author’s hypothesis and whether it is supported
  4. How the literature will contribute to your topic
  5. Whether opinions expressed by the author(s) are correct

 

Choose the Type of Review You Wish to Write

A good review usually concentrates on a theme, such as different theories, information on the progress of developing a new medical device, or how past developments influence new discoveries. A review might also ask that more resources be used to continue research in that specific field.

There is probably a continuum between mini- and full reviews. The same point applies to the dichotomy of descriptive vs. integrative reviews. While descriptive reviews focus on the methodology, findings, and interpretation of each reviewed study, integrative reviews attempt to find common ideas and concepts from the reviewed material.

There are advantages and disadvantages to writing a review. In addition to having more available data, other advantages include confirmatory data analysis and that reviews are considered to be an evidence-based resource. Some of the disadvantages are they are more time consuming and not all studies will provide the requisite amount of data. In addition, statistical functions and interpretations are more complex and authors must ensure that the populations from each study and all studies combined are heterogeneous.

 

The above descriptions are all important sections of writing a scientific review article, but not the whole sections, it also includes discussion, conclusions, study limitations, acknowledgments, references, and something else. Writing a scientific review article is not an easy task, be fully prepared, you will be succeeded.

Review How to Write a Scientific Review Article.

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