bims-librar Biomed news
on Biomedical librarianship
Issue of 2018‒09‒16
one paper selected by
Thomas Krichel
Open Library Society


  1. J Allied Health. 2018 ;47(3): 167-171
    Bonfield M, Fearnside L, Cramp F.
      This paper describes the personal experience of two novice reviewers in developing and conducting a systematic litera¬ture review (SLR) in the field of medical ultrasound. The review was performed as part of a PhD study by the first author, which required the researcher to critically review all relevant studies in their specific research area. The review was conducted using a formal, scientific process and high¬lighted 20 relevant papers. Among the lessons learnt, undertaking an SLR was a time-consuming process. The search produced 1,987 papers, and screening the search yield was facilitated by using a pre-defined protocol. Extraction of data from each study was standardised and generated a 1-page summary of the key findings and methodology to facilitate comparisons of the included studies. The Critical Appraisal Skills Programme (CASP) tool was used for quality assessment. In the critical appraisal process, it is essential that reviewers have good baseline knowledge in the research subject, a solid under¬standing of the fundamentals of a robust research study including potential bias in research. With the great amount of information that a critical appraisal produces, good information management was key throughout the review to ensure the process was explicit and replicable and so that reviewers could justify their decisions. The methods and processes detailed in this report, as well as its lessons, are relevant to an SLR for any research subject.