Skip to Main Content

Systematic Reviews

Systematic Review Library Service

RDH Library Systematic Review Services

The services available are divided into three categories: Consultation; Search services; and Post-search services. Each category includes a list of services that may be provided depending upon your need. 


  • Determine if the review is a systematic review or another type of review.
  • Provide guidance on the systematic review process, use of systematic review reporting standards and guidelines (e.g., PRISMA), if desired by requester.
  • Establish scope of review and desired timetable for completion of systematic review.
  • Assist to develop the systematic review protocol and update with literature searching steps.
  • Determine if there are any relevant published research articles or reviews.
  • Advise on use of a citation management tool for a systematic review.
  • Discuss selection of inclusion/exclusion criteria.
  • Assist with finalizing and registering systematic review protocols at a registry site, if appropriate.
  • Advice on the selection and use of systematic review software.
  • Access to Covidence, a systematic review tool. 

Search Services

  • Assist with formulation of research questions(s). 
  • Formulate keywords with input from review team. 
  • Test and refine search strategies.
  • Translate into appropriate search syntax, and conduct searches in at least 3 databases.
  • Document search strategies developed, refined and used for final searches and send results to requester.
  • Identify and suggest grey literature, if appropriate.
  • Complete methodology section of a systematic review.
  • Keep copies of all search documentation and results, citations, and information provided to requester.

Post Search Services

  • Draft the literature search steps for the Methods Section (e.g., search design, databases and resources searched, any limitations applied, dates searched, search strategies for one or more databases, etc.).
  • Assist with use of systematic review software (e.g., development of screening forms, establishment of accounts, training help, etc.).
  • Advise and facilitate retrieval of full-text articles for review and data extraction (e.g., downloading, ordering, naming, uploading, etc.).
  • Provide editing and publication submission assistance, which may include editing of entire manuscript, preparing and modifying manuscript bibliographies per the appropriate journal style, etc.

Acknowledgement or Co-Authorship

At a minimum, acknowledgement for systematic review services provided by a librarian is requested for completion of any systematic review steps.

Co-authorship is highly recommended, if the Librarian has provided all Search Services and any Post-Search Services as listed. Co-authorship is in lieu of acknowledgement and recognizes the significant and important contributions of the Librarian to the systematic review.

The International Committee of Medical Journal Editors’ (ICMJE) guideline, Defining the Role of Authors and Contributors, is a helpful resource to determine authorship for a publication.