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Social Work Doctoral Student Library Research: Systematic Reviews

A guide to help incoming doctoral students in the field of Social Work. This guide is to introduce the students to key library resources to help them with their research and scholarship.

Systematic Reviews

What is a systematic review?

A systematic review is a review of scientific studies on a specific topic. It uses a formal process to:

  • Identify all relevant studies
  • Assess their quality
  • Summarize the evidence

Why do a systematic review?

Systematic reviews help make sense of large bodies of scientific literature by applying the scientific process to:

  • Reduce bias in how conclusions are reached
  • Improve the power and precision of results
  • Summarize evidence about the effectiveness of particular approaches for addressing a public health problem
  • Analyze generalizability of findings
  • Identify knowledge gaps and need for additional research

The Review Process