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Physics & Astronomy: Subject Guide: Write | Cite | Publish

Writing Literature Review Papers

Choose A Tentative Topic

Do some preliminary reading before settling on a topic. If you know very little about the topic you have chosen, you may need to narrow or broaden your topic later. Browse subject encyclopedias, magazine articles, textbooks, etc. for ideas.

Gather Background Information

Gather background information to familiarize yourself with your topic. Reference materials such as subject encyclopedias are great resources to start. Encyclopedia articles are comprehensive overviews of important topics in the field. You may also consult particular books for more information.

Find Recent Research Progress From Journal Articles

  • Choose appropriate databases
  • Analyze your topic
  • Plan and conduct searches
  • Revise your search strategy and sometimes your research topic
  • Keep track of your search log
  • Save successful searches and export references to EndNote.

You May Also Need Information From Other Sources

Depending on your topic, you may also need other forms of scholarly information, such as research data or reports, which may not be found in literature databases. The web portals and search engines listed on the Web Sources tab are useful to find such information. Note: As most information free online is not peer-reviewed, you need to evaluate the authority and reliability of information found on the Internet before using it.

Citation Management

Why Cite?

  • Avoid plagiarism
  • Give proper credit to the information you use
  • Allow readers to find your sources

Citing Styles

Use EndNote to manage your citations and cite while you write!

EndNote is a citation management program that lets you:

  • Export citations from databases to EndNote and create your reference database
  • Format your references into the style you selected

EndNote comes with more than 3,300 predefined bibliographic styles for the leading journals.

Visit the EndNote Guide to see how to use EndNote.

Where to Publish: Open Access

Open access

Image source: Steve Lawrence, “Online or Invisible?” Nature, 2001, 411 (6837): 521.

Publishing in open access journals can increase impact and exposure of your work, as can including your publication in an institutional and/or disciplinary repository after publication.

Where to Publish: Evaluating Journal Impact

Take a look at the Journal Citation Reports and see which journals rank high in your field. At the same time, you also need to consider which journals can help you increase your research impact.

After Publishing

How to maximize the impact of your work after publishing?

You may deposit your publication into a disciplinary repository and/or our institutional repository (GSU Digital Archive). Before depositing, you need to check the publisher's copyright transfer agreement to see if you have the right to post your publication.