Systematic Reviews (SRs) are a form of Evidence-Based Practice.
They are scientific investigations in themselves, with pre-planned methods and an assembly of original studies as their “subjects.” They synthesize the results of multiple primary investigations by using strategies that limit bias and random error... These strategies include a comprehensive search of all potentially relevant articles and the use of explicit, reproducible criteria in the selection of articles for review. Primary research designs and study characteristics are appraised, data are synthesized, and results are interpreted.
From: Systematic reviews: synthesis of best evidence for clinical decisions. Cook DJ, ulrow CD, Haynes RB. Ann Intern Med. 1997 Mar 1;126(5):376-80.
Cochrane's explanation: What are Systematic Reviews? (3:23 min; September 18, 2015)
Preliminary assessment of potential size and scope of available research literature. Scoping reviews are often a first step in conducting a SR because it allows the investigator the opportunity to review the literature landscape and determine whether or not a SR is feasible (too much or too little publications). This type of review takes the same systematic and rigorous methodologies used in conducting an SR.
Scoping review papers:
Institute of Medicine (IOM) standard (3.1.1) for systematic reviews states: work with a librarian or other information specialist trained in performing systematic reviews to plan the search strategy. MSK librarians have collaborated with researchers on a number of systematic reviews and have earned CE credit for completing systematic review workshops.
A paper published online (February 5, 2015) in the Journal of Clinical Epidemiology entitled, "Librarian co-authors correlated with higher quality reported search strategies in general internal medicine systematic reviews" shows that engaging a librarian or information professional on the systematic review team is a potential way to help improve documentation of the search strategy.
A paper published online (Nov 2014) in the Journal of the American Informatics Association entitled, "Effects of librarian-provided services in healthcare settings: a systematic review" concluded that librarian-provided services directed to participants in training programs improved skills in literature searching and facilitated the integration of research evidence into clinical decision-making; that these services save time for health care professionals and supported informed decisions. In addition, two studies illustrated patient length of stay was reduced when clinicians requested literature searches related to a patient's case.
The librarian as co-author is committed to collaborating and supporting the following Systematic Review tasks:
In the box to the left, you will find our Systematic Review Search Request form. Please fill it in to the degree that you can and return to Donna Gibson. Your librarian will meet with you to complete it and discuss questions you may have. You may also call 212-639-2109.
We recommend that you print a copy of the two PRISMA documents, which are used by journal editors to help authors understand systematic review publication requirements. They will be discussed in more detail at the first meeting with your librarian.