I'm completely new to writing a review paper, so how would I best write it? Do I need to read every single paper? Or just a few sections like the introduction and results and get the info from them? How would you approach this?

  • What purpose does that review serve? – Karl Jul 23 '17 at 21:21
  • 1
    I'm starting my research for my masters degree, so it will be beneficial for me in two ways: 1. I'll get to review the literature and that is extremely needed, and 2. There are no review papers I could find on this topic, so it will also be a good contribution. – Mahmoud Abdel-Mon'em Jul 23 '17 at 22:57
  • Look again, a topic with 90 papers and not a single review? And sorry, nobody will print a review written by a masters student. That's for post-doc. – Karl Jul 23 '17 at 23:24
  • Possible duplicate academia.stackexchange.com/q/43371/17776 – Mithun Jul 24 '17 at 7:06
  • 1
    @Mithun thank you for the link! That is very helpful. – Mahmoud Abdel-Mon'em Jul 24 '17 at 11:25

Usually review papers are written by established researchers in that field. They already got good knowledge about the topic and a library to work with. In that case you won't read all the papers in detail again, just the parts you need. You might read newer/additional papers and yes, ofc you read the whole.

Writing a review while you are not familiar with the topic is common if you start working on that topic. Often profs want new students to write a review which means they have to read the whole literature and afterwards they are familiar with the topic. In this case you should read all the papers. In the end the prof usually gives additional input in case something is missing or wrong.

If you write the review "on your own" you definitely got to read every paper very carefully, otherwise you might miss important details. I advise against doing this.

Writing reviews correctly would be very important since it helps everyone who wants to get knowledge on that field. Sadly reviews are often completly full of errors.

  • Thank you! What is a reasonable time frame for a review of about 90 papers? Suppose I already have them. – Mahmoud Abdel-Mon'em Jul 23 '17 at 16:59
  • @MahmoudAbdel-Mon'em One month, or thee? Depending how detailed you want it, how much you already know about the topic, etc. Ask your supervisor in what timeframe he expects you to deliver the thing. – Karl Jul 23 '17 at 23:26
  • @Karl thank you. I'll discuss it with my supervisor. – Mahmoud Abdel-Mon'em Jul 24 '17 at 16:30

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.