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can a literature review be a WS?


Lost in transition
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Hi,

I'm struggling to devise my writing sample. I am not satisfied with my termpapers for undergrad and MA course, so I hope to write a new one.

By the by, can a literature review -- analyzing articles dealing with the issue of my interest,comparing and contrasting the view and assumptions, and pointing out some flaws or shortcoming of those view -- can be a writing sample?

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By the by, can a literature review -- analyzing articles dealing with the issue of my interest,comparing and contrasting the view and assumptions, and pointing out some flaws or shortcoming of those view -- can be a writing sample?

I'm going to say no. While adcomms definitely want to see such interaction with previous research and thought, they also expect to see your ability to formulate your own ideas on the matter, which would be lacking in a review. But maybe this review is a good launching point for your writing sample?

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No. They want to see evidence of original research. This means coming up with your own ideas, engaging with the primary materials, and formulating your own analysis.

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I'm actually really surprised by this as I plan (planned?) to submit a lit review as my sample. I assumed a it would be fine as a sample, as long as it provides a thoughtful analysis. Maybe I'm misunderstanding what a lit review is... my sample provides an analysis of previous research, pointing out the limitations, and the concluding with my ideas for future directions. Would you consider that a lit review? Does it sound like a good sample?

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Hi,

I'm struggling to devise my writing sample. I am not satisfied with my termpapers for undergrad and MA course, so I hope to write a new one.

By the by, can a literature review -- analyzing articles dealing with the issue of my interest,comparing and contrasting the view and assumptions, and pointing out some flaws or shortcoming of those view -- can be a writing sample?

I took research communication course and produced a research paper that I am sending it as a writing sample. And my writing sample contains literature review section. So I believe that although lit review is part of a writing sample, you should send whole research paper.

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I'm actually really surprised by this as I plan (planned?) to submit a lit review as my sample. I assumed a it would be fine as a sample, as long as it provides a thoughtful analysis. Maybe I'm misunderstanding what a lit review is... my sample provides an analysis of previous research, pointing out the limitations, and the concluding with my ideas for future directions. Would you consider that a lit review? Does it sound like a good sample?

I agree with gracie. The writing sample is suppose to be original research that you have written, often times something already published, meaning even if its not published it should be at publishable quality. Having said that, a lit review is part of my writing sample, but it is only a section. I don't think a literature review alone would suffice, but it may vary from discipline to discipline.

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I agree with gracie. The writing sample is suppose to be original research that you have written, often times something already published, meaning even if its not published it should be at publishable quality. Having said that, a lit review is part of my writing sample, but it is only a section. I don't think a literature review alone would suffice, but it may vary from discipline to discipline.

I think you're right, it probably does vary between disciplines. My programs just ask for something that "demonstrates the candidate's ability to write analytical English prose," so not necessarily original research.

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