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Systematic Reviews: Library Services

Resources to Support Work in Systematic Reviews

Becker Medical Library Systematic Review Services

Becker medical librarians can partner with you to author systematic reviews. The role of librarians in systematic reviews include…
 

  • Designing comprehensive search strategies. To request a systematic review search, fill out a Systematic Review Request Search form
  • Locating the best resources to search based on the research question
  • Translating search strategies across multiple resources
  • Using citation management software to organize search results
  • Reporting the search process according to current standards and guidelines
  • Remaining current in best evidence, best practice, standards, and guidelines
  • Conducting informatics based research to improve the precision, recall, and reproducibility of designed search filters

Washington University School of Medicine faculty, students, and staff are eligible for Becker Medical Library Systematic Review Services. Add a Becker Librarian to your author team and we will design and manage thorough, complex searches in multiple databases.

We will work with your team to design and report thorough search strategies based on guidelines and standards set forth by CochranePRISMA, and IOM.  We will also provide you with:

  • Detailed search strategies. To request a detailed search click here
  • EndNote libraries of de-duplicated results
  • Excel workbooks of search results
  • Written methods section regarding search design and implementation according to PRISMA and IOM guidelines. 
  • Data required for generating a PRISMA flow diagram

To request a systematic review search, fill out a Systematic Review Search Request

Systematic Review Service Policies and Procedures

Systematic Review Service Policies and Procedures

Eligibility
Washington University School of Medicine faculty, students, and staff are eligible for Becker Medical Library Systematic Review Services. Add a Becker Librarian to your author team and we will design and manage thorough, complex searches in multiple databases.

What We Provide

We will work with your team to design and report thorough search strategies based on guidelines and standards set forth by Cochrane, PRISMA, and IOM.  We will also provide you with:

  • Detailed search strategies
  • EndNote libraries of de-duplicated results
  • Excel workbooks of search results
  • Written methods section regarding search design and implementation according to PRISMA and IOM guidelines. 
  • Data required for generating a PRISMA flow diagram

Time Needed

We are often working on several systematic reviews and must attend to the reviews by the order in which we receive them. Please contact us a minimum of 6-8 weeks before you hope to begin screening abstracts.

The average time it takes to design and complete a search is 2 weeks. How much time is actually takes depends on the complexity of the search, types of databases searched, changes required, and length of time required to resolve questions.

Requirements for Getting Started

To fill out a Systematic Review Search Request form you will need…

  • To have already conducted a preliminary search
  • PICO question
  • Inclusion and Exclusion Criteria
  • A minimum of 2 example articles, however, if you have more that you already know you will include in your analysis then provide those as well

We are happy to help you get what you need in order to create a PICO question, inclusion and exclusion criteria, and example articles.  

Authorship
According to the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors, authorship should be based on the following 4 criteria:

Substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work; or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work; AND

            Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content; AND

            Final approval of the version to be published; AND

Agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.

The search strategies librarians design and implement are a substantial contribution to the design of the study while the citation data we acquire and organize is a substantial acquisition of data.  The written methods regarding the design of the search, resources searched, and data retrieved falls under drafting the work. We will provide any requested feedback and revisions as well as final approval of the written work. If we agree to be an author on a systematic review we will stand behind the accuracy and integrity of our role in the project.

If an investigator would prefer to not include a librarian as an author on a systematic review, they are welcome to design a systematic review search on their own and we are happy to provide guidance.

Grants
Investigators submitting requests for comprehensive literature searches for projects with grant funding are expected to include library effort in the grant as an unpaid expert consultant.

Article Retrieval

Your librarian is not the appropriate person to obtain the physical articles. It is a fairly easy, though time consuming task that we are happy to show you or someone on your team how to do. We have delineated the best process for pulling articles in a way that saves the most time and money here (link to full text retrieval instructions). You can save time by optimizing your EndNote software to automatically pull all articles Becker provides online access to. Instructions on how to do that are available here (link to full text retrieval instructions).

Interlibrary Loan: It is doubtful that we own every article needed for your review so be sure to plan for the expense of interlibrary loan. Interlibrary loan is a service provided to you by Becker Library that will obtain articles we don't own on your behalf. There is a charge of $ 6.00 per article for Wash U faculty, staff, and students and $8.00 per article for BJH/BJC/SLCH members.

Resources

Resources

Systematic Review Libguide
PRISMA
IOM Standards for Systematic Reviews
Cochrane handbook of Systematic Reviews
WU Software for EndNote

For assistance, contact 
Debbie Thomas, Associate Director, Health Information Services
dathomas@wustl.edu 
314-362-9729