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The University of Arizona

How to Conduct a Systematic Review

Step 2-Conducting a Systematic Review

2. Identify your KEYWORD

A. Clearly state the research question as a research question

  • Example: In college students, how does sleep deprivation affect learning?

‚ÄčB. Identify the main and unique KEYWORDS


  • Example:  Sleep deprivation


                           College students

C. Apply quotation marks to your and/or asterisks to your search          

Use quotation marks around phrases (keywords consisting of two or more words that must go together) to keep the words together

  • Example:
    • "Sleep deprivation"
    • "College students"


Use asterisks to fill-in-the-blank at the end of a word. This is called truncation. The asterisk will be replaced by any letter(s) that could possible end the word.

Example: learn* = learn, learning, learner, learners, etc.

  D. Identify synonyms or related terms   


"sleep deprivation"    "REM deprivation"


                            "college students"      "university students"