A Scoping Review is one of many evidence synthesis methodologies. Similar to a Systematic Review, a Scoping Review requires a systematic search strategy and clear, structured reporting. Unlike a Systematic Review, a Scoping Review is exploratory in nature and answers a broad research question designed to assess the extent of the existing research.
According to Arksey & O'Malley, who wrote the seminal work on Scoping Reviews, this particular methodology serve 4 primary purposes:
The key to a publishable review is good planning and organization from the very beginning. It is helpful to meet with a librarian before you begin your review to learn more about the resources and strategies available help you get and stay organized through the process.
It's also important to note the limitations inherent in scoping review methodology in your published papers.
Unsure if a Scoping Review methodology is best for your purposes? Take a look at this decision tree from Cornell University to help you weigh your options.