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Systematic Review Service

Systematic Review Service

Starting to write a systematic review?  The Institute of Medicine (IOM) recommends working with an information professional when conducting a systematic review.  In addition, a JAMA article titled "Engaging Medical Librarians to Improve the Quality of Review Articles", explains the value of having a medical librarian as part of your review team.

The UChicago biomedical librarians are available to assist with:


  • Discuss different types of reviews (e.g. systematic, narrative, etc.)
  • Help formulate the research question
  • Verify question has not recently been addressed in a systematic review
  • Advise on reporting standards and best practices (e.g. PRISMA Guidelines, Cochrane, IOM etc.)
  • Advise on database selection
  • Train on use of database platforms
  • Train on use of citation management tools
  • Train on obtaining full-text of published papers
  • Discuss software tools for organizing systematic reviews (e.g. Distiller, Covidence, etc.)

Protocol Development


The following services constitute a major contribution to the review and require librarian co-authorship:


  • Identify keywords and controlled vocabulary terms
  • Develop formal, comprehensive search strategies
  • Translate strategies for each database
  • Conduct searches in multiple databases
  • Export results to citation management tool, including de-duplication
  • Document and save search strategies


  • Write methods section on search strategy and its execution
  • Format appendix with search strategy from selected database(s)

If you would like to setup an initial consultation meeting, please contact

Subject Specialist

Deb Werner's picture
Deb Werner
Librarian for Science Instruction & Outreach and Biomedical Reference Librarian
John Crerar Library
Room 154