We live in an age of information overload- it has been estimated that experts may need to read over a dozen articles a day to keep up with the annual developments in their fields. Evidence Syntheses have attracted attention as possible solutions to this information explosion- solutions that could both reduce the amount of required reading by summarizing the evidence base for a specific problem and improve the quality of our knowledge by synthesizing and critically appraising evidence from various sources.
There are many types of evidence syntheses, including but not limited to Systematic Review, Scoping Review, Rapid Review, and Mixed Methods Review. Selecting a synthesis type depends upon your research question and goals, as well as constraints such as time available, body of research, and the size of your team.
Search methodology for evidence synthesis projects is an area of professional interest for librarians. Organizations such as the Cochrane Collaboration (Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions) and the Institute of Medicine have published guidelines that recommend involving a librarian in the creation and execution of the search strategy for a systematic review.
Use this guide to learn more about what is involved in the process of planning, conducting, and reporting on a systematic review. In addition to this introductory page, this guide provides an overview of important resources that relate to systematic review methodology through four sections: