VU Systematic Literature Reviews: Overview

Overview of systematic reviews

This guide will explain the process of conducting a formal systematic review as well as provide you with relevant resources to ensure that you're meeting discipline standards. It's important to understand the time and resources that are required before you embark on conducting a systematic review. This decision tree, gives a good, quick overview of what goes into each type of review. If you'd like to discuss the systematic review methodology in greater detail and decide which review is right for you, please make time to talk to a librarian.

Move through the slide deck below to get an overview of systematic reviews. 

University of South Australia. (2019, March 14). What is a systematic review [Video]. YouTube.

Guidelines and standards

A good way to think of the following guidelines is as a 'reporting standard'. By referencing these standards it is a way of signalling that you have done your due diligence when it comes to ensuring the transparency, reproducibility and therefore credibility of your review. In addition, it may be the case that specific journals have particular requirements in regards to these standards, so it is worthwhile checking what is required in the journal you are considering. All of the guidelines and standards outlined here are both well-established and authoritative so they serve as an excellent starting point for your systematic review.

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“The process of preparing and publishing a Cochrane Review is different from that for other journals. Reviews are typically registered at conception and there is a closer working relationship between Cochrane and the review authors. In addition, Cochrane Reviews follow a highly structured format so that they can be published within the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, and their preparation follows a structured process.”

-Cochrane Handbook, Part 1, Chapter 2.1.

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Further resources

Acknowledgement of Country

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Acknowledgement of Country

Victoria University acknowledges, recognises and respects the Ancestors, Elders and families of the Bunurong/Boonwurrung, Wadawurrung and Wurundjeri/Woiwurrung
of the Kulin who are the traditional owners of University land in Victoria, and the Gadigal and Guring-gai of the Eora Nation who are the traditional owners of University land in Sydney.