ATTEMPTING LLM DISSERTATION: SYSTEMATIC LITERATURE REVIEW
Ultimately, LR is not only limited to Chapter 2 or the ‘standard research’. It is an integral ‘academic processes’ applied to all chapters. For instances:
Chap 01 – Introduction
This is in fact, the ‘Title Proposal’. One just can’t obtain a title without knowing the ‘subject matter’ one wish to research. So, intrinsically, one would have a preferred area of law to research upon. Thereon, it is surface reading of the LR from all journals one can lay its hand upon. Group them according to ‘Topic’, which ultimately, forms one’s research objectives. ‘Seaming’ these objectives, forms the ‘Research Aims’, which is your ‘Research Title’ itself. This can be a daunting task of combing the internet/library, downloading, printing and classifying them into ‘boxes’. Very time consuming.
Chap 02 – Literature Review
A special chapter dedicated to LR. While one continue to build up the collection of ‘library’, now, one has to also read the entire collection in detail, among other, in a systematic way, i.e.:
For each literature keep a ‘Summary Log’ comprising among other, the ‘topic’; title; author(s); abstract; OSCOLA referencing; summary and reference. This is a ‘second reading’.
Keep a ‘register of all the literature’ you had referred to in a matrix comprising of the author; title; and the topic it ought to address your objectives.
Revisit all the literature again, and add up another item, the ‘research gap’ as in the ‘Summary Log’, highlighting what these literatures failed to address or its limitations. This is a ‘third reading’. One has to read critically to draw out these ‘knowledge gaps’.
Finally, connecting the dots, by building up a narration of how an issue is addressed in one literature, to be ‘defeated’ or ‘supported’ by another literature. This is what is known as ‘Structuring the Chapters’. It should sufficiently provide a mind map as to how one would write the chapter.
This is even more daunting as the saying goes, ‘it is a lonely journey, and LR takes 3-times of reading, not just one.’ Some spent years, just building on this part of the journey.
Chap 03 – Methodology
This chapter is dedicated to the entire deliberation of the Research Methodology, in quantitative research. However, for qualitative legal research, this chapter, one can go straight into addressing the second objective, as the first objective would have been addressed in chapter 2. In attempting to write the ‘body of the thesis’, the following may be applicable, pour over the LR for the respective topic and narrate the matrixes in accordance to:
Chapter 04 – Findings / Chapter 05 – Analysis
This chapter 5 is dedicated to the findings of the ‘fieldworks’ for quantitative research. While this chapter 6 is dedicated to analysing the findings of the ‘fieldworks’ against other ‘available models’ for quantitative research.
For qualitative, both chapters are dedicated to addressing the other objectives or topics. In addressing such the same, Bloom’s taxonomy approach is applicable. Thus, the LR for the respective topic is heavily relied upon to build up the narration.
Chapter 06 – Conclusion
Chapter 06 – Conclusion
This chapter is dedicated to:
In conclusion, one’s research is all about LR, where before you can create, you ought to research what others had done in a systematic way, through the hierarchy of Bloom’s taxonomy, not the other way around. So, my ‘zen-master’ Sv is correct when he says:
[O]ne of the reasons why you are required to use academic or legal sources is that those works have been peer reviewed before publishing and include a section describing the method of research and its limitations. This is science and must be supported by tried and tested work. This does not mean that the published work is correct. Quite the opposite, it if often incorrect and therefore it is often discredited and dismissed.
[Y]ou must aim at presenting ‘critical analysis’ and ‘evaluation’ in every paragraph you write. You cannot present originality (or create) unless you complete this process of analysis and evaluation.
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I am contributing to the public information regarding my experience reading law in UK University, in general. These information is for educational purpose only and shall not be taken as an advice be it legal or otherwise. You should seek proper advice to your case with the relevant professionals. The author cannot guarantee the accuracy of the information so provided here.