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Some Info About Publishing

MROAR (Mount Royal Open Access Repository)
Honours students are strongly encouraged to deposit their theses to the institutional repository (IR), a searchable digital open-access collection showcasing the scholarship, research, and intellectual contributions of the Mount Royal University community.

Why Share Your Work?

Institutional repositories are the standard tool for capturing the research and scholarship created at academic institutions and research organizations. The Registry of Open Access Repositories (ROAR) lists over 4700 repositories worldwide.

There are many benefits of sharing your work using the repository:

Research shows that open, freely available scholarship is read and cited more frequently.   Your works will be preserved and accessible through technological changes.   Collecting your work in the repository is less time-consuming than maintaining a personal website, and creating a long-term record of your work.   Sharing in the repository likely fulfills open access mandates/requirements set by your funding agency.   For students, evidence of high-quality research can enhance applications for employment or graduate school, and prospective students may be attracted by the research focus of a faculty member or the institution.

Submitting Your Work

Members of the MRU community may submit works to the repository, including faculty, students, staff, and other employees. We offer two options for submitting works.

Option 1: Library-supported submission

Library staff are available to submit works on your behalf or to assist you with the submission process. You can either contact myself (Madelaine or my colleague Cari ( and we are happy to assist!!

Option 2: Self-submission

Visit the submission page, where the submission form will take you through the following steps:

  1. Provide your contact information and choose a repository collection where you wish to share your work.
  2. Describe your submission. Some fields are required, and some are optional. More information makes your work more easily discoverable.
  3. Tell us what license you want for your work. We encourage the use of a Creative Commons license, or you can use a standard copyright. More information about copyright options in the repository can be found on this page.
  4. Upload your document(s).
  5. Accept the terms of use, and also the non-exclusive distribution agreement. The latter allows Mount Royal University to host your work in the repository and does not restrict you from publishing your work elsewhere.
  6. Complete your submission

Once your work is submitted we will need some time to review the submission before it is committed to the repository.


The following is a select list where undergraduate students in CRJS who have been published in the past.  If you are interested in sharing your work beyond the repository, please connect with me and I am happy to assist in this process!

(De)Constructing Criminology: International Perspectives - an open-access international journal that accepts student work on issues relating to crime, law, offending, victimization, criminalization, and decolonization of our justice systems. 

UJPPS - The Undergraduate Journal of Politics, Policy and Society is an open-access journal that seeks to publish the academic work of undergraduate students within the arts, social sciences, and humanities.  There is a call for papers that normally goes out every February. 

UTUCR (University of Toronto Undergraduate Criminal Review)  - a student-run publication that publishes scholarship that will have a positive impact on the criminology community. 

Justice Report - This is a sister trade publication of the Canadian Journal of Criminology and Criminal Justice.

Canadian Journal for Undergraduate Research (CJUR) - a multidisciplinary peer-reviewed student-led open-access journal for undergraduates across Canada. 

Spectrum - Student-run, open access, collaborative undergraduate journal that publishes content within the areas of health sciences, natural sciences, engineering, social sciences, and humanities. 

Appeal - Review of Current Law and Law Reform - A student-run peer-reviewed journal operating out of UVic. Promotes legal scholarship in its political, philosophical, and social contexts. 

Western Journal of Legal Studies - An open-access student-run journal focusing on contributions to Canadian Law. 

List of (mostly American) undergraduate research journals


There are a couple of very useful guides authored by other MRU librarians that may help before you get started:

Scholarly Publishing

Undergraduate Research

The Literature Review

What is a literature review?

It describes and evaluates the research that has been done in a particular area of research. 

  • In general, a literature review should be clear, concise, cohesive, and comprehensive discussion of a narrow, well-defined research question.
  • The goal is usually to identify relationships, contradictions, controversies, gaps and potential next steps in the research.

What is it for?

  • It gives your ideas for your research topic
  • It helps you understand the big picture and background to your topic so that you can identify where your proposed research fits in the exisiting body of knowledge.
  • It gives your reader a sense of the sources examined and what research is being drawn upon, and demonstrates your knowledge of the topic.

Literature reviews should synthesize and compare studies that discuss different aspects of your topic, depending on your purpose (for example, you might compare experimental method, population studied, theoretical framework, etc.).

University of Toronto Writing Centre Explains it Well

A Successful Literature Review

  • Logically organize different positions taken by the authors on issues relevant to your topic
  • It does not list what each source says one by one, without providing a connection between studies
  • Highlights important subthemes
  • It does not provide an argument about what methods work best or reveal the team's opinion about issues
  • Demonstrate the relationships of the works you are citing
  • It does not include studies included arbitrarily to fill in your literature review

Types of Lit Reviews

Narrative or traditional literature reviews provide a general overview of the previous research done on a topic, and can take many shapes and forms. They do not need to follow any specific guidelines or standards, so they can be completed more quickly and by a solo researcher. Example

A narrative literature review should have...

  • A clearly defined topic
  • A search for relevant literature
  • A logical organization structure
  • An interpretation and discussion of the selected relevant literature

Scoping reviews are a type of knowledge synthesis that uses a systematic approach to identify and synthesize an existing or emerging body of literature on a given topic.  These are time-sensitive and normally require a multi-person team.  They are more common in the health sciences, but we are seeing them more in the social sciences.  Example

Integrative reviews are critical analysis of empirical, methodological or theoretical literature that aims to highlight future areas of research/needs relating to a topic. Similar to scoping reviews, it requires a systematic search and appraisal of selected studies. Example

Systematic reviews and Meta-Analyses - high-level review article that collates all empirical evidence that fits with pre-specified eligibility criteria in order to answer a specific research question. Narrative reviews or traditional reviews tend to be mainly descriptive and while systematic reviews and meta-analyses focus more on the search strategy and research plan.  These types of reviews should be replicable by other researchers.  Prevalent in the health sciences and essential to inform evidence-based decision-making. Example

Structuring your review

Chronological Approach - reviewing the various studies in order of their appearance in time

Methodological Approach - organizing by different methodologies used

Thematical Approach - organizing around different themes or concepts, key issues or debates or sometimes discipline/area of study

Recommended Resources

Supreme Court of Canada 

              Summaries and background papers compiled by the Library of Parliament to support policy decisions. 

Citation management software

Citation management software allows you to save and organize items found via searching the library's databases. It also can be used to create reference lists and citations for papers. There are a number of software systems available

There are two citation management tools you may consider using to organize your research:

Take a close look at them both and decide which one would work best for your research projects.  You can also take a look at this chart for a quick look at the differences between the two products to help you make a decision about what best meets your needs.  

Reasons to choose Mendeley

  • Your research consists mainly of pdfs. Often this is the choice for researchers in the Sciences
  • Mendeley works well with Chrome and Safari and has a desktop version
  • 2 GB cloud storage
  • Mendeley has very well developed social collaboration tools. For example, you can find citations from similar users and search within its crowd-sourced research database
  • Desktop version is installed on all publicly accessible computers at MRU

Reasons to choose Zotero

  • Zotero works better if your research is both html and pdf. Often this is the choice for researchers in the Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Zotero works well with Firefox. It also has a standalone desktop application
  • 300 MB cloud storage
  • Allows easy citation additions from websites like Amazon and Flickr
  • Well liked interface for tagging and writing notes to accompany citations

Other Helpful Resources

Insurgent Research (A. Gaudry) If you are doing research relating to Indigenous populations, this is a must-read.

Indigenous Studies Portal (USask) The iPortal content has a primary focus on Indigenous peoples of Canada with a secondary focus on North American materials and beyond.

Crime and Justice  -  A sub-page of the Stats Canada site with focus police, crime, and court statistics. 

Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics -  statistics related to crime and victims of crime prepared by the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police (CACP).

Canadian Network for Research on Terrorism, Security and Society - a searchable database that connects scholars with research and initiatives relating to terrorism and security policy. 

Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse and Addiction - includes quick data and statistics, fact sheets, and research publications.

Juristat -  In-depth analysis and detailed Canadian statistics on a variety of topics and issues related to justice and public safety. 

Stats Canada -  Stats Canada is the official national statistics site. 

Correctional Services Canada Contains general information for the public but also links to publications and research and special reports.

THOMAS - A one-stop site to find American federal legislation.

National Institute of Corrections (US) Resources targeted toward corrections practitioners and researchers. 



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Madelaine Vanderwerff

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