Systematic Reviews

Role of the Librarian

According to the Institute of Medicine Standards for Systematic Reviews, the systematic review team should work with a librarian during the following steps:

3.1.1     Work with a librarian or other information specialist trained in performing systematic reviews to plan the search strategy
3.1.2 Design the search strategy to address each key research question
3.1.3 Use an independent librarian or other information specialist to peer review the search strategy

In addition to the standards outlined by the Institute of Medicine, a trained librarian can help with numerous steps throughout the planning, conducting, and reporting phases of your systematic review. With our specialized knowledge of the systematic review process, we can save you time and confusion by providing guidance on the systematic review process and the best practices for many of the steps along the way, as well as actively helping to develop and refine your topic, create systematic literature searches of all relevant databases, search the grey literature, and provide information for your PRISMA figure and Methods section.

 

HSL Services

The librarians at the Health Sciences Library support the needs of UNC students and researchers conducting systematic reviews, comparative effectiveness reviews, and meta-analyses. Services range from Tier 1 Services, including consultations and trainings, to Tier 2 Services with a high level of involvement, where there is an expectation of authorship credit, funding, or the possibility of the librarian becoming involved as a review team member, depending on the level of involvement. Contact us to discuss your SR topic, scope and timeline. Before you meet with a librarian, please consider filling out our Systematic Review Intake Form, so that we can have an idea of how we can best serve your needs. For more information, check out our HSL Systematic Review Services Brochure.

  SR Phase SR Step Tier 1 Services Tier 2 Services
  Planning Topic Development
  • Guidance on SR process and steps
  • Background searching for current and upcoming reviews
  • Help with development or refinement of review topic
 
    Development of Eligibility Criteria
  • Help with refinement of PICO (population, intervention(s), comparator(s), and Key Questions
  • Guidance on study types to include
 
    Protocol Creation & Registration
  • Guidance on protocol registration
 
  Conducting Searching for Studies
  • Identification of databases for searches
  • Instruction in search techniques and methods
  • Training in bibliographic citation software use for managing and sharing search results
  • Development and execution of searches
  • Downloading search results to citation management software and removing duplicates
  • Documentation of search strategies
  • Management of search results
    Study Selection
  • Guidance on methods for study review
 
    Data Extraction
  • Guidance on data extraction and management programs and repositories
 
  Reporting Writing/Publishing
  • Suggestion of journals to target for publication
  • Drafting of literature search description in Methods section
  • Guidance and information for PRISMA figure
  • Drafting of literature search appendix
  • Review of other sections or final draft

Need help?

Call the HSL at (919) 962-0800 to get immediate help (during library hours).
E-Mail us and the best suited librarian will get back to you promptly (quick answers or one-on-one consultations).
Chat with a HSL Librarian to get help (during business hours).
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