Writing for Publication: Transitions and Tools that Support Scholars’ Success - Mary Renck Jalongo, Olivia N. Saracho 2016
Literature Reviews from Dissertation Chapters
From a Class Paper to a Publishable Review
Conference Proposals and Article Types
Without a doubt, the task of converting a voluminous Chap.2 of the traditional dissertation into a concise journal article represents a challenge (Foster, 2009). The endeavor also surfaces as a possibility at a time when the writer is not necessarily well-equipped to undertake it because he or she is so close to the existing document that it is difficult to take a step back and determine what is essential versus what is peripheral. Activity 5.7 offers a questioning framework that can assist dissertation writers.
Activity 5.7: Mining Chap.2 for a Review Article
The metaphor of “mining” is used here because, just as prospectors toss away much of the material to search for precious metals or gems, writers of dissertations need to do likewise and to arrive at a concise review of the literature article (or book chapter). Some strategies for stripping away the nonessential include: (1) What is the focus of the review? What definitive themes have emerged? (2) What is the most current/relevant supporting literature? Can some of long lists of citations be cut? (3) Is this information essential in order for readers to understand the manuscript or is it peripheral to the focus? (3) Would the audience be likely to know some of this information already? (4) Could reference to the published reviews of others take the place of building background? (5) What clear purpose does the review serve for readers? Will it save them time? Be immediately applicable to their work? Bring them up-to-date on a recent trend/issue? (6) Is there any place where the words bog down? Can you delete paragraphs, sentences, phrases and words?