By searching databases of journal articles and conference proceedings, one can find literature reviews. These generally are articles having a long list of references.
These literature reviews are often published in scientific journals specialized in the publication of literature reviews, such as Advanced Drug Delivery Reviews or Progress in Materials Science. However, many scientific journals publishing original research articles also occasionally publish literature reviews.
With certain databases, it is possible to search specifically for literature reviews with the help of the search functions.
You can also search for literature reviews in databases of journal articles and conference proceedings by adding keywords such as review*, "state of the art" or survey* to your search strategy.
To learn how to do a search strategy on your subject, consult the guide Finding Scientific Articles.
Theses and dissertations almost always include a section summarizing previous writings -- a literature review. By searching theses or dissertations about a similar subject to yours, you will be able to find literature reviews related to that subject and, most probably, useful references.
If you are a graduate student at Polytechnique Montréal, your advisor probably has already supervised other students. You can simply search for their theses and/or dissertations and have access to their references. These may be useful as well!
To find theses and dissertations supervised by a specific professor at Polytechnique Montréal, use the advanced search function of the PolyPublie digital repository or search in the Directory of Scientific and Technical Publications.
An encyclopedia article or a book chapter may also constitute a literature review. You can find handbooks, specialized encyclopedias, and recommended general works for the many fields of engineering in the Resources by Subject guides.
You may also search in Sofia Discovery tool by adding keywords such as review* or "state of the art" in Keywords (All); you will then search in tables of contents in addition to book titles. For a search demo in our Catalogue, view our tutorials.
Finally, you may consult the following specialized resources:
It is generally advised to search for literature reviews about one or two important aspects of your subject.
If you find a literature review addressing your exact subject/topic...
... talk to your advisor!
This literature review may question the innovative aspect of your project.
Did you know that the library collection also includes recent print editions of books? You can access our entire print and electronic book collection from Sofia, our discovery tool.
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