Systematic Reviews: Home

Information about conducting systematic reviews for University of Kansas researchers. Information on KU Libraries support for researchers doing systematic reviews.

"A systematic review is an academic research paper that uses a method called ‘evidence synthesis’, which can include meta-analysis, to look for answers to a pre-defined question. The purpose of a systematic review is to sum up the best available research on that specific question. Reviews can also show when there has not been enough research carried out, and where more research is needed" -- Campbell Collaboration

Types of Reviews

Article helpful for considering the best type of review for your study: Grant, M.J. and Booth, A. (2009), A typology of reviews: an analysis of 14 review types and associated methodologies. Health Information & Libraries Journal, 26: 91-108.

Rapid review: uses systematic review methods to typically answer practical or policy questions in a time-constrained study

Scoping review: identifies the nature and extent of research evidence

Systematic review: systematically searches for, appraises, and synthesizes research evidence, adhering to guidelines

Umbrella review: compiles evidence from multiple reviews

Meta-analysis: This term is used in some fields as shorthand for a systematic review, but is an analytical approach that can be used with a variety of review types

Training Materials


KU Libraries are now offering a one-year organizational license for the systematic review software, Covidence, to improve the efficiency and quality of all phases of the review process. It is available at no cost for all KU and KU Medical Center faculty, students and staff with KU and KUMC email addresses. Access KU's organizational Covidence account.

Request a Consultation

Contact a librarian to begin your systematic review project

The participation of a librarian on a research team is recommended or required by CochraneCampbell Collaboration, and the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.