Online Global Classroom on Constructing Literature Review in PhD Study

The Landscape Architecture Program of the Faculty of Built Environment and Surveying (FBES), Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), had organised its first Online Global Classroom (OGC) programme on 27 October 2020 (Tuesday). This programme was hosted by the faculty’s outbound mobility programme supported by UTM International (UTMi).

UTM had invited Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) and Universitas Sebelas Maret (UNS) to be the co-organisers for this webinar programme. This OGC started from 9 am to 12 pm through Webex meeting. The virtual international seminar namely: Constructing Literature Review in PhD Study.

Likewise, the webinar was successfully organised and was attended by 203 participants. There were seven UTM staff and 140 participants among UTM students whereas 57 were international students from Indonesia, Nigeria, Sri Lanka and Korea involved during this webinar.  The objective of organising this webinar was to navigate PhD candidates and their preparedness on writing literature reviews.  

The programme began with a warm welcome and introduction of the three invited speakers and also five PhD students who had contributed to this webinar event.  The first speaker, LAr. Professor Dr. Ismail Said from FBES, UTM, led the webinar session. He delivered the novelty of writing a literature review to be a good piece of discursive prose; elaborate research problem, and refine research gap, generate research framework; construct research framework and illustrate research findings.

Prof. Ismail emphasised on synthesis of review  that includes cross disciplinary and review empirical study to make up an in-depth literature review. There were several examples of clear research trend maps shared by the speaker to identify and evaluate the research trend and gap in the literature study. Besides, there was also an interactive exercise for audiences during the webinar session to keep them hooked in literature review sharing and discussions.

The second speaker, Associate Prof. Dr. Zalina Harun from Institut Alam & Tamadun Melayu (ATMA), UKM, had discussed a method of constructed and paraphrased literature review based on knowledge prominence and author prominence. Subsequently, the speaker also shared the steps of enumeration process in writing the essence of literature review sentences. 

Additionally, five of Prof Ismail’s PhD students had presented paraphrased literature reviews and writing discussions on the exploratory and explanatory study, experimental study, and descriptive and narrative study. Each example offered an overview of different type of research design on how to paraphrase a literature review.

Third speaker, Dr. Lee Yoke Lai from FBES, UTM, explained a sample of literature review essential to support a theoretical framework. The determined theoretical framework of literature review must include relations between the research scope integrated to outline research method and identified parameter or variables.  

At the end of the webinar, there was a question and answer session. A fruitful discussion was presented to all webinar audiences. To wrap up the webinar session, Prof. Ismail said that a literature review is vital to developing either qualitative or quantitative research into synthesis of the research findings. Therefore, the in-depth and narrative of a literature review will help to form a comprehensive research paradigm.  In all, this research webinar had successfully accomplished the objective to achieve the faculty‘s outbound mobility programme.