The PRISMA statement defines a systematic review as "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." 1
In the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions, the key characteristics of a systematic review are listed as:
The Systematic Review Process:
1. Moher D, Liberati A, Tetzlaff J, Altman DG, The PRISMA Group. Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses: The PRISMA Statement. PLoS Med. 2009;6(7):e1000097. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1000097
2. Higgins JPT, Green S (editors). Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions, Version 5.1.0. The Cochrane Collaboration; 2011. http://handbook-5-1.cochrane.org/
The Systematic Review Toolbox (SR ToolBox) is a searchable catalog of tools that support various tasks within the systematic review process. Tools include software tools, quality assessment / critical appraisal checklists, and reporting standards guidelines. A few of the featured tools are listed below, some free and some subscription -based. Many of the subscription-based tools offer a free trial if you are interested in exploring the tool.
CEBM – Critical Appraisal tools - https://www.cebm.net/2014/06/critical-appraisal/
JBI – Critical Appraisal Tools - https://joannabriggs.org/research/critical-appraisal-tools.html
CASP – CASP Checklists - https://casp-uk.net/casp-tools-checklists/
Duke University – Evidence-Based Practice: Appraise - https://guides.mclibrary.duke.edu/ebm/appraise
Dartmouth University – Evidence-Based Medicine Worksheets - https://www.dartmouth.edu/~library/biomed/guides/research/ebm-resources-materials.html?mswitch-redir=classic
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