5 steps to prep for a great systematic review

If you plan to publish a systematic review, Becker Library’s Systematic Review Search Support Service can help. Before completing the Systematic Review Request form, here are a few steps to take that will streamline your systematic review process:

  1. Gather your team. Your team should include the Principal Investigator, 2-3 researchers who are content experts on the systematic review topic, a librarian, and a statistician if needed (especially important for meta-analysis).
  2. Develop a clear and focused research question with inclusion and exclusion criteria.
  3. Run a preliminary search to identify existing reviews, assess the volume of potentially relevant studies, and locate at least three example articles (benchmark articles) that meet your review criteria.
  4. Choose your benchmark articles. Benchmark articles are examples of what you expect to find in the systematic review search results; the librarian uses them to create and test the search strategies.
  5. Think about your timeline to complete the systematic review project and where you would like to publish your systematic review.

If you have questions or need assistance with any of the above steps, email Becker Library at askbecker@wustl.edu to reach a systematic review librarian.