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Congratulations on completing this module. We have explored the benefits of conducting a systematic review and looked at the differences between a traditional literature review and a systematic review.

Various aspects of a systematic review were briefly examined, including; the research question and PICO; developing a protocol and PRISMA; resources and strategies for searching the literature; eligibility criteria for screening results; critical appraisal tools to assess the quality of studies; synthesizing data; and writing the review.

Further assistance

Individual assistance – For more assistance in conducting a systematic review contact the library by submitting a Request Research Assistance form. 

Library guide – Additional information is available from the online library guide Systematic Reviews.

Cochrane handbook – The Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions details systematic reviews more thoroughly, including meta-analysis. It is the official guide and describes in detail the process of preparing and maintaining Cochrane systematic reviews on the effects of healthcare interventions. The Handbook includes guidance on the standard methods applicable to every review (planning a review, searching and selecting studies, data collection, risk of bias assessment, statistical analysis, GRADE and interpreting results), as well as more specialised topics (non-randomized studies, adverse effects, complex interventions, equity, economics, patient-reported outcomes, individual patient data, prospective meta-analysis, and qualitative research).

Learn more

A short video Introducing systematic reviews (14 mins) is available (Microsoft Stream, login required).

You may also be interested in viewing the following webinar Systematic Reviews (60 mins) recorded from the Library’s PhD Up! program (now called Research Plus). The webinar content complements this online module.


Your comments and suggestions on how we can improve this module will be appreciated. Please complete our feedback form.

What’s next?

You have completed this module on Conducting a Systematic Review. You can return to the Research and Writing Hub to choose another module to complete.


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Research and Writing Skills for Academic and Graduate Researchers Copyright © 2022 by RMIT University is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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