Literature Review Structure

A structure to help students plan and write an effective literature review.

How to use this resource

Download this document and adapt it to suit your task. Attach it to your Cadmus Assignment as a Resource.

Pair with Literature Review Template

Literature Review Structure

Use this structure to help you plan and write your literature review.


  1. Explain why you are writing the review
  2. Outline the relevance of the topic
  3. Outline the scope of the review
  4. Outline each aspect of the topic that you will discuss
  5. Outline the criteria that you used to select your literature (e.g. type of sources used, date range)
  6. Write a thesis statement that outlines the structure of the review


  1. Create 2 - 3 sections that address each aspect of the topic (with sub-headings)
  2. Write a mini-introduction, a series of paragraphs, and a mini-conclusion for each section


  1. Summarise the main agreements and disagreements
  2. Summarise the main controversies
  3. Outline any suggestions for further research
  4. Overall perspective on the topic


  1. Add your end-text reference list