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U ST 321: Construction of Race and Ethnicity in the U.S.

ISCORE: Iowa State Conference on Race & Ethnicity


Hi! These pages have been developed for your USt 321 class, and are meant to help you find research material that will be relevant to your race & ethnicity literature review and research for ISCORE / NCORE. I'm Susan Vega Garcia, the librarian working with your class.

Contact me: You can contact me by sending me ISU email at with your questions.

~Susan VG

What is a Literature Review?

A literature review is the portion of a research project that focuses on first finding research articles and publications on your topic, and second, giving an overview of that research in your presentation or paper. In essence, a lit review should answer the following questions:

  • What have others written on my topic?
  • What are some of the most current or most authoritative publications on my topic? What do they say?
  • How do my ideas contribute to the scholarly conversation on my topic?

A good lit review gives you a solid foundation of knowledge on which to build your own contributions to the topic. The main goals of a written lit review are to demonstrate your thorough understanding of a topic so you can build on that understanding with your own ideas or interpretation.

To do a good lit review, you need to use the scholarly indexes that are most likely to lead you to authoritative research for your specific field of study or discipline.

Image by Stuart Miles;

Your Librarian

Susan A. Vega García's picture
Susan A. Vega García
Head of Instruction
Associate Professor
140 Parks Library
Iowa State University
Ames IA 50011
(515) 294-4052

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