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Psychology: Systematic Review Resources

Welcome to the Library guide for Psychology. Here you will find a OneStop service to assist you in your studies or research at the NWU.

What is a Systematic Review?

A systematic review attempts to collate all empirical evidence that fits pre-specified eligibility criteria in order to answer a specific research question.  It  uses explicit, systematic methods that are selected with a view to minimizing bias, thus providing more reliable findings from which conclusions can be drawn and decisions made.

The key characteristics of a systematic review are:

  • a clearly stated set of objectives with pre-defined eligibility criteria for studies;
  • an explicit, reproducible methodology;
  • a systematic search that attempts to identify all studies that would meet the eligibility criteria;
  • an assessment of the validity of the findings of the included studies, for example through the assessment of risk of bias
  • a systematic presentation, and synthesis, of the characteristics and findings of the included studies.

(Cochrane Handbook 1.2.2)

Resources

Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions
The Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions is the official document that describes in detail the process of preparing and maintaining Cochrane systematic reviews on the effects of healthcare interventions.

PRISMA
PRISMA stands for Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses. It is an evidence-based minimum set of items for reporting in systematic reviews and meta-analyses.  The aim of the PRISMA Statement is to help authors improve the reporting of systematic reviews and meta-analyses.

View the PRISMA Statement that consists of a 27-item checklist and a four-phase flow diagram.

EPPI-Centre
The Evidence for Policy and Practice Information and Co-ordinating Centre (EPPI-Centre) is part of the Social Science Research Unit at the UCL Institute of Education.

The Cambell Collaboration
The Campbell Collaboration is an international research network that produces systematic reviews of the effects of social interventions in Crime & Justice, Education, International Development, and Social Welfare.

View the production of a systematic review page.
 

Systematic Reviews (Journal)

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Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews

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Systematic Review Videos