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I am doing a literature review for the first time and I am struggling with what kind of system I should be using regarding note-taking so that I do not have to go back and forth between papers.

Is there a systemic way of taking notes/capturing the main ideas/contributions/challenge of a paper so that a quick glance at my notes can refresh my memory and understanding of a paper, as well as help me see how it fits in the big picture?

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Exactly. Either create a template: Purpose/Gap Claims Literature/Framework Methodology (including context / participants) Discussion Conclusions / Implications Working theories Quotes

1 (2 max) page for each article, chapter, book, etc. Make sure you keep track of citations (zotero / endnote).

More recently - I started to write a paragraph that includes - major concept/claim, participants, framework, findings and implications or conclusion) (and then limitation of study or implications.

This way this is ready to be inserted into lit review (and then editd as necessary).

HTH

And, READ STRATEGICALLY: abstract, then conclusions... and then skim sections and and READ only what necessary to get the gist of the article!

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    @GoodDeeds - Hope that helps is how I decoded it.
    – Jon Custer
    Oct 27 '21 at 15:57

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