After following a rigorous literature selection, inclusion and exclusion criteria, I have finalized (around 200) research articles for my review paper. However, now I don't know how to read those papers. I tried to read a couple of articles sequentially (which obviously seems a naive approach), but I still don't know what to capture from them. I believe there should exist a systematic approach or framework to follow. PS: CS Major

  • 5
    If you don't know what you want from the selected papers, how did you actually select them? You clearly have some criteria which must have some indication of what you are trying to accomplish, no?
    – Jon Custer
    Apr 11, 2022 at 13:44
  • I do believe it is only possible to read sequentially. Did you mean chronologically? Apr 11, 2022 at 17:49
  • 1
    This question cannot be answered without more information about the purpose of your review. You do not have to reveal the precise subject here, but you should at least describe it genericly. For example: * review different algorithms or approaches for solving X class of problems; * review the relative performance of various algorithms for X class of problems; * critique assumptions that have been misunderstood by scholars in treating X class of problems which do not correspond to real-world concerns. These are examples, but my point is that they would involve different review approaches.
    – Tripartio
    Apr 12, 2022 at 7:15

1 Answer 1


You probably have some structure in mind for the review. Maybe you're doing a time-based review, wherein you start discussing work done in the 90s(say), then proceed to the next decade and so on. Or maybe your review separately addresses different aspects of the topic you're studying (say, hardware aspects, software aspects, etc.)

(There could be several other structures, based on your goals and the field.)

Once you have selected the structure, you could make folders for each of those divisions, go through the abstracts of each paper, and put then into the respective folder(s). Next, maybe you would like subdivisions within your article. Define the criteria for classifying those subdivisions, and repeat the process for each literature folder.

Once you've done this enough, you should have a fairly granular arrangement that will make your reading streamlined.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .