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					Literature Surveys

  Source : : Keshav P. Dahal (Bradford University)
            : Prof Jiang, Prof McClachey
     Research literature survey

Many operations involved
         Finding literature
         Reading reading
         Writing reviews of papers and tracking papers
         Discussing ideas
         Having brilliant ideas and discovering which
          ones are worth bothering with
         The hierarchy of information.


              Primary sources                          Secondary sources

Experiments   Interviews   Questionnaires   Conversations   Publications   Lectures
    Why survey the literature?

 Discover the state-of-the-art
 Identify gaps in the body of knowledge
 Identify relevant work
 Find useful expertise
 Keep abreast of developments
       Doubts about the Topic

   Happens all the time! …others still

    interested? - it is probably worthwhile!

   Look at future work section of papers and

    other dissertations, Masters and PhDs.

   Rightsize your dissertation problem.
The world of literature.

• Textbooks.
• Learned Journals.
• Conference proceedings.
• World wide web.
• Trade papers.
• Newspapers.
Types of academic publication

 • Original paper
 • Review of a research topic
 • Bibliography
 • Thesis
 • Dissertation
 • Technical Report
           The project context

• What related work is being undertaken?

• What is the motivation for the work?

• How does it help me?

• Why am I studying this aspect of the problem?
      The area of investigation.

 What techniques are in use?
 What are the findings of other people?
 What are the views of other people?
 How do they compare with my views?

 Literature surveys are a critical appraisal
     rather than a simple list of papers.
A literature survey demonstrates :

   an awareness of an adequate body
    of knowledge

   the ability to apply that knowledge
    to the project
       Where to find Journals and
        conferences in your field

• Ask the faculty members at your university Where
have you found papers?
• Become a member of any associations that
  interest you
• Go to the websites of the conferences in which
  you are interested
• Register for the mailing lists in your area of
• Most of conferences announcements are mailed
  to the mailing lists.
     Conference for networking
• Standard paper presentation conference
  sessions – informative but passive
• Attend professional development workshops and
  social events
• Meet other PhD students and high profile faculty
• Explore opportunities for :
      – greater insight into the field
      – collaborators for co-authorship
      – critical reviewing of your research
      – Becoming member
    Guidance for finding materials
• Have a particular conference in mind
   – Look through the proceedings for the past two years
• Authors’ web site for technical report and not-quite-yetpublished
• Papers cited by the papers from recent proceedings
   – do not assume their comments are an accurate reflection of the
      cited paper
• Use citeseer to find more recent papers that cite the
   – find the even more recent papers that cite those papers
• Search for relevant papers written by the program
   committee in past instances
   Guidance for finding materials
• google, yahoo type search engines are too
  general may not be enough
  – Paper before 1997 may not be posted in web
  – Cannot be found if different terminology than the
• Review request by colleagues – but not enough,
  may not be in public domain
• Search the digital libraries of, IEEE, and any other professional
  societies relevant to your field
  – Membership of some organisation is free for students
• Library may have online search capabilities
 Online search

• CMU Library
      Guidance for literature review
•   Do not cite from a cite - go to the source
•   Read the whole papers that you cite
•   Do not be shy about contacting authors
•   Citing papers more than 3-4 years old
    – OK for seminal work (journal) but
    – not appropriate when comparing your results
    – citeseer for more recent papers citing those papers.
•   journal citation is usually preferable
•   Use specialised citation formats
•   Use standard terminology
•   Do not over cite your own previous work
•   Do not assume anything about concepts and work done
    in others’ paper
               Reading papers

• Be selective in what you read
  – find appropriate conferences
  – quiz your supervisor or academic staff
  – scan before reading, read abstract and
    conclusions first
  – if it still looks interesting, read and read again
  – summarise the ideas in journal/work notes
  – its normal to be overwhelmed
           Evaluating Papers
• Did the ideas described really work?
• Cut through the jargon, are there any
  interesting ideas underneath at all ?
• What motivated the authors ?
• What choices were open to the authors ?
• Validity of assumptions ?
• What was their result ?
• Any future directions ?
    The purpose of publication.

• Expand the body of knowledge.
• Prevent replication of effort.
• Enable independent checks on results.
• Disseminate opinions.
• Provoke discussion.
• Gain wider recognition for our work.
How to submit a paper to a journal or

 • Submission processes varies
 • Decide upon the appropriate outlet for your paper
 • Visit website for scope/topics covered
 • Find submission guidelines
 • Most journals/conferences publish their submission
 • Follow guidelines precisely - papers not following the
   format may be rejected
 • Two stage submission process in some cases
  Chances of acceptance - journal
• acceptance rates for journals vary
• depend the journal's prestige, quality/rigor of the
• top tier journals less than 10% - first submission
• reviewers almost always require at least one revision
• Revise taking considering every comments – write
  separately why you can not address any.
• acceptance rate for revisions is generally around 50%
• most peer-reviewed journals are reviewed blindly
• the scope, quality of work and format are important
Chances of acceptance - conference
• acceptance rates for conference also vary
• depend the conference's prestige and associations
• tend to be much higher than for journals – 30%
• usually decision is made in one review
• most prominent conferences use blind, peerreviews
• Usually the same high quality feedback is received
• the scope, quality of work and format are important

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