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Systematic Review Support Through Main Library

Your Librarian

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Elizabeth Kline
Main Library A403
(520) 621-7209

UA Libraries policy for non health sciences researchers

The goal of the evidence synthesis (ES) service is to support UArizona researchers outside of the health sciences through the completion of high-quality systematic review (SR) or scoping review publications. For support in health sciences areas visit Systematic Review & Evidence Synthesis Information Guide (UAHSL-Tucson).

Evidence synthesis reviews, unlike other types of reviews, entail reproducible and transparent methodology. For help differentiating between the various types of reviews, consult A Typology of Reviews.

Our values
To align with our core values of integrity, inclusiveness, collaboration and cooperation, transparency and accountability, and openness and fairness, we strive to provide quality service to all members of our community. We recognize that individual needs are as unique and varied as the individuals themselves, and all individuals will be treated fairly. Support for evidence synthesis projects is designed with these principles in mind. 

How we can help
Our service focuses on advancing and supporting UArizona research through a commitment to open scholarship. When you work with our librarian, you will learn to:

  • apply effective systematic review methodology and design,
  • follow best data management practices,
  • consider infrastructures that promotes open access.

We offer basic guidance and consultation including:

  • pointing you to resources that will help you select a framework,
  • suggest possible databases for your searches,
  • basic instruction in search techniques and methods,
  • guidance on documentation of your search strategies (for the full list see Table of Service) [1] 

We can provide:

  • 5 hours per evidence synthesis project
  • On a case-by-case basis, we can provide additional time to doctoral candidates pursuing dissertations.

Limits to our services

Due to limited staffing, we can't provide more in-depth support, such as

  • in-depth consultation on framework selection
  • research question development and related design elements,
  • expert search support, including search strategy design and selection of appropriate resources to search,
  • collaborative engagement throughout the systematic review process,
  • student support for courses or assignments that incorporate systematic review components. 


Table of Service [2]:


Role Consultative librarian support Researchers' responsibility
Topic Development Determine if the indicated review type matches the topic

Conduct the process and steps
Develop and/or refine the review topic

  Provide guidance on searching for published and forthcoming reviews Search for published or forthcoming reviews that duplicate the proposed project and, if duplicates are found, adjust the topic or scope to avoid duplication
Development of Eligibility Criteria  

Develop and/or refine review topic

Develop a research question and eligibility criteria

  Direct researchers toward resources on framework selection (e.g., PICO (population, intervention(s), comparator(s), outcome(s)) Select framework and refine protocol based on selected framework
    Select of study types to include
Protocol Creation and Registration Provide guidance on protocol registration Register protocol
Searching Provide general guidance on identification of databases for searches Determine resources to search
  Provide basic instruction in search techniques and methods Develop search strategies according to database syntax
  Provide basic training in using citation management software for managing and sharing results Select and configure citation management tool
    Develop, execute, and manage searches and results
    Download search results to citation management software and remove duplicates
  Provide guidance on documentation of search strategies  Compile and manage all documentation per PRISMA guidelines
Study Selection and Extraction Provide guidance on methods used for selecting studies and extracting data Select studies and extract data, adhering to applicable standards and using appropriate tools
Writing and Publishing Suggest journals to target for publication Select target journal for publication
    Draft literature search description in "Methods" section
    Create PRISMA diagram
    Draft literature search appendix
    Develop manuscript

[1] Nota bene: Time permitting, librarians can decide if they want to engage in collaborative projects as part of their scholarship in exchange for authorship credit as prescribed by ICJME. This is external to the current evidence synthesis service model and requires direct negotiation and agreement between the researcher and librarian.