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How to Write a Best Review Paper to Get More Citation


Are you new to academia? Do you want to learn how to write a good review paper to get in-depth knowledge about your domain? you are at the right place. In this article, you will learn how to write the best review paper in a step-by-step systematic procedure with a sample review article format to get more Citation.

What is a Review Paper?

A review paper, also known as a literature review, is a thorough, analytical examination of previously published literature. It also provides an overview of current research works on a particular topic in chronological order.

  • The main objective of writing a review paper is to evaluate the existing data or results, which can be done through analysis, modeling, classification, comparison, and summary.  
  • Review papers can help to identify the research gaps, to explore potential areas in a particular field.
  • It helps to come out with new conclusions from already published works.
  • Any scholar or researcher or scientist who wants to carryout research on a specific theme, first read the review articles relevant to that research area to understand the research gap for arriving at the problem statement.
  • Writing a review article provides clarity, novelty, and contribution to the area of research and it demands a great level of in-depth understanding of the subject and a well-structured arrangement of discussions and arguments.
  • There are some journals that publish only review papers, and they do not accept research articles. It is important to check the journal submission guidelines.

Difference Between a Review Paper and Research Paper

The difference between a review paper and research paper is presented below.

 Review paperResearch paper
PerspectiveEvaluates previously published literatures on a specific topicDiscusses the present research findings of an author
ContentExisting research dataNew experimental findings
LengthLonger than a research article.Limit to journal it is to be submitted.

6 Types of Review Papers

The review papers are classified in to six main categories based on the theme and it is presented in the figure below.

Types of Review Papers
6 Types of Review Papers

Purpose of Review Paper

The purpose of a review paper is to assess a particular research question, theoretical or practical approach which provides readers with in-depth knowledge and state-of-the-art understanding of the research area.

The purpose of the review paper can vary based on their specific type and research needs.

  • Provide a unified, collective overview of the current state of knowledge on a specific research topic and provide an inclusive foundation on a research theme.
  • Identify ambiguity, contradictions in existing results or data.
  • Highlight the existing methodological approaches, research techniques, and unique perceptions.
  • Develop theoretical outlines to resolve and work on published research.
  • Discuss research gaps and future perspectives.

Criteria for Good Review Paper

A good review paper needs to achieve three important criteria. (Palmatier et al 2017).

  1. First, the area of research should be suitable for writing a review paper so that the author finds sufficient published literature.
  2. The review paper should be written with suitable literature, detailed discussion, sufficient data/results to support the interpretation, and persuasive language style.
  3. A completed review paper should provide substantial new innovative ideas to the readers based on the comparison of published works.


Step-by-Step Systematic Procedure to Write a Review Paper

Time needed: 20 days and 7 hours.

The systematic procedural steps to write a the best review paper as follows:

  1. Topic selection

    Select a suitable area in your research field and formulate clear objectives, and prepare the specific research hypotheses that are to be explored.

  2. Research design

    Designing your research work is an important step for any researcher. Based on the objectives, develop a clear methodology or protocol to review a review paper.

  3. Data collection

    Thorough analysis and understanding of different published works help the author to identify suitable and relevant data/results which will be used to write the paper.

  4. Data analysis

    The degree of analysis to evaluate the collected data vary by extensive review. The examination of treads, patterns, ideas, comparisons, and relationships among the study provides deeper knowledge on that area of research.

  5. Report

    Interpretation of results is very important for a good review paper. The author should present the discussion in a systematic manner without any ambiguity.
    The results can be presented in descriptive form, tables, and figures. The new insights should have an in-depth discussion of the topic in line with fundamentals. Finally, the author is expected to present the limitations of the existing study with future perspectives.

Steps to Write a Review Paper
Steps to Write a Review Paper

Sample Review Article Format

  • Title, Abstract, Keywords

Write an effective and suitable title, abstract and keywords relevant to your review paper. This will maximize the visibility of your paper online for the readers to find your work. Your title and abstract should be clear, concise, appropriate, and informative.

  • Introduction

Present a detailed introduction to your research which is published in chronological order in your own words. Don’t summarize the published literature. The introduction should encourage the readers to read your paper.

  • Various topics to discuss the critical issues

Make sure you present a critical discussion, not a descriptive summary of the topic. If there is contradictory research in your area of research, verify to include an element of debate and present both sides of the argument. A good review paper can resolve the conflict between contradictory works.

  • Conclusion and Future perspectives

The written review paper should achieve your objectives. Hence, the review paper should leave the reader with a clear understanding of following questions:

What they can understand from the review paper?

What still remains a requirement of further investigation in the research area?

This can include making suggestions for future scope on the theme as part of your conclusion.

  • Acknowledgement       

The authors can submit a brief acknowledgement of any financial, instrumentation, and academic support received pertaining to research work.

  • References

Citing references at appropriate places in the article is necessary and important to avoid plagiarism. Each journal has its own referencing style. Therefore, the references need to be listed at the end of the manuscript. The number of references in the review paper is usually higher than in a research paper.

Hope this article would give you a clear idea on how to write a review paper. Please give your valuable comments.


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