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Lehigh University Libraries - Library Guides

PSYC 195: Health Psychology Recitation FALL 2023

Research Cycle

See graphic below. Background information at the top of the chart starts the cycle of doing a literature review.

Comments about the steps in the research cycle:

  • Background information: can give you a broad conceptual map of your topic or they can help you understand technical terminology you encounter in your reading.
  • Identify research question (and hypothesis for quantitative work): keep it focused!
  • Find literature review examples: look for lit review section of journal articles, or look for a special type of article called a review article.
  • Searching existing literature:  choose databases to search, then learn how to search them.
  • Manage references: use a citation management software such as Zotero.
  • Critically analyze and evaluate: When you do so, focus on the content of an article that’s directly related to your thesis statement.
  • Synthesize knowledge: put things into your own words, i.e. paraphrase. 
  • Write literature review: Again, look at some models. Be concise. Identify gaps in knowledge as you see them.
  • Monitor new literature: important if you are working on an extended project (not relevant for this class)
  • Revise literature review: just as you do with any writing.


See Creative Commons license at lower left of this webpage, which inspired above chart: