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Systematic Review Service

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We highly recommend that you reach out to the library before you start a systematic review or meta-analysis! The librarians from our Systematic Review Service can guide you toward the appropriate methodologies and guidelines for your research question.



Systematic Review Service

Princeton University Library offers two levels of service for systematic reviews and meta-analyses: one level offers in-depth consultations on reviews and the second offers the possibility of librarian co-authorship. 

Tier One: Librarian Consultations

Tier One: Research Consultation (1-3 hours)

In this model, the subject librarian can advise the research team on: 

  • Sources of studies: databases, grey literature, listservs, contacting authors
  • Identifying keywords and constructing an effective search query
  • How to validate a search query
  • Executing searches and exporting results
  • Recommendations for bibliographic management
  • Recommendations for automation tools for screening


All researchers are welcome to schedule research consultations for all types of reviews for any subject area. 

Tier Two: Librarian Co-authorship

Tier Two: Librarian as Research Collaborator and Co-author (2-6 weeks)

Solely at the discretion of the librarian and according to their time and availability, it may be possible for the librarian to join the research team as a collaborator and co-author who is responsible for data collection (gathering studies).  In this model the librarian will: 

  • Identify sources of literature
  • Work with the research team to identify keywords
  • Construct and validate the search query
  • Execute and document the search
  • Export bibliographic records into a bibliographic record manager (ex. Zotero, EndNote)
  • De-duplicate search results
  • Present the research team with the initial data set for screening
  • Contribute to the methodology section of the manuscript
  • Provide supplementary materials for reproducibility of the search strategy


  1. Tier Two of the Systematic Review Service which offers librarian co-authorship is only available to research teams producing a systematic review or meta-analysis. At this time we do not offer co-authorship for other review types such as scoping reviews, mapping reviews, or literature reviews. 
  2. The research team must agree to register a research protocol (research plan). 
  3. The research team must agree to sign a Memorandum of Understanding which outlines the responsibilities of the librarian and establishing co-authorship. 
  4. Librarians may no co-author any piece of research or scholarship that will be submitted for a grade.