Master of Sport Business: Literature reviews

A guide for students studying the Master of Sport Business

Literature review guides

The following guide from VU Library provides an overview of the literature review process including useful tips and advice on effective searching and managing of resources. The guide is intended as a starting point for any student or researcher new to the literature review process.

In the Literature Review library guide, refer to the section on using the PICO and SPIDER framework to help formulate a clear and focused research question, which you can then use to convert into an effective search strategy for your review. 

Note: The key databases and journals for Sport and Exercise Science literature are listed under the databases and journals section. 

The below guide will show you how to design, research, analyse and write up your literature review. 

  • VU Literature Reviews
  • The Sage Research Methods database has a section entitled 'Project Planner' where you can plot your literature review or research project:
    Overview, Philosophy of research, Defining a topic, Reviewing the Literature, Developing a researchable question, Research design design, Planning and practicalities, Research ethics, Data collection, Data analysis and Interpretation, Writing up, Dissemination.

In addition, each of the resources below provides comprehensive instructions on how to conduct a literature search: 

  1. Writing a literature review - a great resource from Melbourne University on how to write a literature review. 
  2. Getting started on your literature review, (UNSW)
  3. What is a review of the literature? Toronto University 
  4. From Boston College Libraries a step by step guide to writing a literature review
  5. An excellent resource on report writing from Monash University 
  6. Conducting advanced reviews: From Search to Synthesis - Training videos from Deakin University

Research Proposal resources


You may find it useful to organise your literature search using visual mind-mapping tools.

There are a number of free software tools available to use such as:

Mind-mapping example (

Literature review resources


Sport in business studies: a state-of-the-art literature review


The purpose of this paper is to provide a systematic review of articles on sport published in leading business studies journals within marketing, organisational studies and strategy.


Laurell, C. and Soderman, S. (2018). Sport in business studies: a state-of-the-art literature review, Sport, Business and Management, 8(5), 529-546.

The Thesis Whisperer

The Thesis Whisperer 'blog newspaper' provides lots of useful advice and tips for researching and writing. 

Developing a research question

A great resource on developing research questions from The University of Melbourne, Academic skills team.