What is a systematic review?
"A systematic review is a review of a clearly formulated question that uses systematic and explicit methods to identify, select, and critically appraise relevant research, and to collect and analyze data from the studies that are included in the review.
Statistical methods (meta-analysis) may or may not be used to analyze and summarize the results of the included studies. Meta-analysis refers to the use of statistical techniques in a systematic review to integrate the results of included studies." - Definition from the PRISMA Statement, adopted from the Cochrane Collaboration
One way that a systematic review differs from other review methodologies is that systematic reviews are protocol driven. Similar to how one would not embark on primary research without a research protocol, one should have a protocol in place before initiating a systematic review.
For a more in depth comparison of the methodology of systematic reviews, a systematic search and review, scoping reviews, and other review methodologies, please read Grant and Booth's "A typology of reviews: an analysis of 14 review types and associated methodologies."
What systematic review services do eTreadwell librarians offer?
Planning Your Review
- Providing an overview on the systematic review process
- Search for past systematic reviews
Conducting Your Review
- Identifying databases for searches
- Development and execution of searches
- Documentation of search strategies
- Managing search results
- Data management
Reporting Your Review
- Drafting literature search description for methods section
- Drafting literature search for appendix
- Guidance and information for PRISMA flowchart
I'd like to work with a librarian on my systematic review. How do I get started?
Ask Us! if:
- You would like to work with a librarian on a systematic review.
- You are not sure if you require librarian assistance with a systematic review, but want to learn more.
Contact us via our online Ask Us form or call the consultation phone number at 617-726-8605.
To help us better determine how to assist you, download and fill out the preconsultation form below. Save the completed form and attach it as a file to your Ask Us message.
We will review your request and contact you to arrange a time for an in person or phone consultation.
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