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Syracuse University Libraries

Systematic Reviews

General procedures to help guide researchers through the elements of a systematic review

Finalize your Team

Revisit your team structure and communicate each team member's role(s) and responsibilities. Remember team members work together in order to fine-tune your research question, establish inclusion and exclusion criteria, execute a comprehensive search strategy aimed at mitigating bias, adhere to professional standards and SR guidelines, conduct the meta-analysis (optional), and write up your results. Team members may have more than one role depending on their expertise, interest, and availability throughout each stage of the project. Decide who is doing what and shore up who will have authorship or acknowledgements. Remember that librarians are excellent partners who can help develop your search strategy and contribute to writing your methods sections. 

Finalize Your Research Question and Inclusion/Exclusion criteria

Revisit how you developed your question and refine it. Establish your exclusion and inclusion criteria based on what you found in your preliminary search.

Inclusion and Exclusion criteria might include:

  • date ranges
  • language
  • define your participants (age group, experience of exposure, sample size, comparison group in the study, etc.)
  • consider geographic location
  • peer reviewed?
  • reported outcomes
  • setting
  • study design
  • type of publication

Register Your Protocol

Register your protocol prior to conducting your review. If you are working with Cochrane, Campbell Collaborations or Collaboration for Environmental Evidence, you will publish your protocol with them. If you are working independently, consider: