January 9, 2016 - Methods and Processes / Towards a Kit of Process

A literature review is a comprehensive study as well as an interpretation of literature that relates to a particular topic. The slides written for a lecture by Mike Waller and Steve Keril were really useful in developing my understanding of what literature is, and how you go about reviewing it.

Pdf of the literature review lecture slides

In making a literature review there are some things to consider:

1. What is relevant?
There is a diverse body of research that is relevant to design, design education, and science and technology studies. Filtering the literature is one of the biggest challenges. Relevant fields might be:
-theories of knowledge
-theories of learning
-science and technology studies

2. Framework and context of the text
A review can refer to material other than books or academic paper, and literature could be a variety of things that are outcomes of research. It could include film, articles, exhibitions, dance, events, workshops, artist work and more. To help I can go back to my approach, and keep asking questions.

3. Referencing
If this is not a published text citation of the material is not so standardised. Something ephemeral like an event is not so obvious to reference, and could be referenced with details as below:

A date, image (if it is an object), “item type”, author / creator, and place (i.e. URL, or where the artifact is located)

4. Whose text?
There is an asymmetric relationship between male and female designers on the MA course. Tutors are predominantly men, and the reading lists and references in lectures and slides mention few women. This is something to be aware of when reviewing published or unpublished literature.