Please click here to make a suggestion .
Books found at the Pardee Library
How Can the Library Help?
Preparing and writing a systematic review involves careful planning and several steps. Librarians are available to help you throughout the process and are eager to help with any or all of the following steps:
- Identifying existing systematic reviews related to your research question.
- Selecting appropriate journal databases for your topic.
- Devising a database search strategy. This includes: identifying keywords/MESH headings, creating a search string, applying search filters and performing databases searches.
- Obtaining the full-text of articles and other documents.
- Searching for grey literature on your topic.
- Keeping a record of the search strategies for the methodology section of your systematic review.
- Assessing the influence of a particular author or paper.
- Managing the search results by saving them in a citation management software such as Zotero or RefWorks.
- Setting up research alerts in databases in order to help you keep up with the latest publications.
Please contact Kate Silfen, librarian for Sargent College, (email@example.com) if you would like assistance with your systematic review. In your e-mail, please include your PICO question and example of one or two citations that address your question.
Why Work With a Librarian?
Several recent journal articles highlight the advantages of working with a librarian when preparing to write a systematic review. These include:
- Dudden, R., & Protzkol, S. (2011). The Systematic review team: Contributions of the health sciences librarian. Medical Reference Services Quarterly, 30(3), 301-315.
- Rethlefsen, M., Murad, M., & Livingston, E. (2014). Engaging medical librarians to improve the quality of review articles. JAMA, 312(10), 999.
- Rethlefsen, Farrell, Osterhaus Trzasko, & Brigham. (2015). Librarian co-authors correlated with higher quality reported search strategies in general internal medicine systematic reviews. Journal of Clinical Epidemiology, 68(6), 617-626.
Finding Existing Systematic Reviews
Identifying existing reviews that address your PICO question is an essential first step for your research. These are some resources for finding existing systematic reviews:
- Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: the premier database for systematic reviews on all health care topics.
- TRIP: A free search engine that searches systematic reviews, randomized trials, and practice guidelines.
- PEDro: A free database of over 30,000 randomized trials, systematic reviews and clinical practice guidelines in physiotherapy
- The Campbell Collaboration: Systematic reviews on effects of social interventions on psychosocial issues.
- PubMed: The clinical queries feature in PubMed allows you to limit your search to systematic reviews.
- CINAHL: Scroll to the bottom right side of the main search screen to limit your publication type to systematic reviews.
- PsycInfo: Scroll to the bottom right side of the main search screen to limit your methodology to systematic reviews.
Guides to Doing Systematic Reviews
Several books and websites offer comprehensive guidance on the process of doing systematic reviews. Here are a few:
The following databases provide citations to articles that report on randomized clinical control trials and other empirical studies:
- PubMed : The core database for biomedical research, PubMed includes abstracts to systematic reviews, randomized clinical control trials, and single studies.
- CINAHL: An allied health databases covering physical therapy, occupational therapy, nutrition, and hearing/speech pathology.
- PsycInfo: An excellent resource for research on occupational therapy, speech/language therapy, and the cognitive neurosciences.
- Web of Science: Useful for finding identifying heavily cited articles in the sciences.
- Nutrition Abstracts & Reviews: covering the latest information on all issues related to human food and health.
- SPORTdiscus: citations on exercise, sports medicine, and related subject areas.
- ERIC: Education Resources Information Center : A useful database for researching the roles of occupational & speech therapists in school settings.
It can be helpful to supplement your review of journal literature with research from grey literature, which includes conference papers, presentations, and research papers found on an organization’s websites. Here are a few recommended sources of grey literature:
- The Grey Literature Report in Public Health
- National Information Center on Health Services Research and Health Care Technology (NICHSR)
- Google Scholar
There are a variety of tools to help you manage your research. Citation management software you a place to store citations and identify duplicates. Other tools will help you track your search strategy and extract data for your research.
- RefWorks: RefWorks is an online tool that is free to all BU users. It allows you to store and organize citations, and generate bibliographies within a matter of seconds. Use RefWorks if you want to use a tool that works seamlessly with databases such as CINAHL and PsycInfo. It works well with PubMed, but requires an extra step.
- Zotero: An free, online tool for all users. Similar to RefWorks, and it works seamlessly with PubMed.
- abstrackr : A free, online application from Brown University that facilitates screening of citations by multiple reviewers.
- Systematic Review Data Depository: a tool for the extraction and management of data for systematic review or meta-analysis.
- Covidence: A free systematic review collaboration tool from a team of researchers in Australia.
All BU libraries will be closed on Friday July 3 and Saturday July 4. For information regarding a particular library schedule over the holiday weekend, please consult the Hours Page or phone the library directly.
Independence Day, commonly known as the Fourth of July, is a federal holiday commemorating the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, declaring independence from Great Britain. The holiday is commonly associated with fireworks, parades, barbecues, picnics, concerts, baseball games, political speeches and ceremonies, and other events celebrating the history and traditions of the United States.
Today is the longest day of the year and the start of the summer season. See the science behind the Summer Solstice.
The Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) is an amazing collection of material from all over the country. This engaging site can be enjoyed by exploring various places or time periods, or simply by browsing their wonderful exhibitions. Not to be missed is the exhibit featuring Boston Sports Temples, as it includes photographs of the old Braves Field that would later become BU’s own Nickerson Field.
The DPLA is also currently looking for humanities educators in grades 6-14 to serve on an Educational Advisory Committee. Read more about this opportunity in their news release.
- $12.7 billion: The amount that will be spent for Father’s Day this year.
- 211,000: The number of stay-at-home dads in 2014.
- $115.57: The amount that the average person will spend on Father’s Day gifts this year.
- 70.1 million: The total number of fathers across the nation.
If you have any questions, please contact the reference librarians at the Pardee Library Services Desk.
Not all important databases are available through Google, and many do not use a similar search algorithm. There are real differences in the way scholarly literature databases are structured, and the distinctions are important. Knowing these details makes it possible to search in advanced ways.
Spending time with a librarian now can save you time when you need to do research in the future. We can teach you how to get the most from our database subscriptions and other resources like electronic journals.
Here are a few ways to receive instruction from our librarians:
Consider this guide your starting point in finding speech, language, and hearing services literature. It will primarily help you discover articles and evidence-based practice summaries on your topic.
- To find books, use the BU Libraries Search box on the homepage.
- To find the full-text of articles, click on the icon in our databases. Watch me retrieve full-text in PubMed in this video. If you need an article or book that BU Libraries does not own, request it for free through interlibrary loan.
- To find a specific journal title at BU, search our collection of electronic journals.
- Tip: Stay organized during your lit review! Try using Zotero, RefWorks, or EndNote to help keep track of your citations and generate bibliographies.
Systematic Reviews & Practice Guidelines
- Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews
- National Guidelines Clearinghouse
- ASHA Clinical Practice Guidelines
Cited References Searching
Get Research Assistance
Please contact Kate Silfen, Health Sciences Librarian, (firstname.lastname@example.org, 617-358-3965) if you have any questions or would like to set up a time to talk about any aspect of your research.
BU Libraries SEARCH
Search the BU Libraries collection and beyond using keywords (e.g. “science fiction”, “cultural anthropology”, “aliens”, etc.)
You can find required and suggested readings for your course at the Mugar Memorial Library Reserves Room (if they are only available in paper form) or online. Click the title below to find the availability of the book.
MLA International Bibliography
An index to books and articles on literature, myth, and folktales
Primary texts, criticism, and reference materials related to literary works in English
Literary Reference Center
Content from encyclopedias and other reference materials, literary journals, and books
Anthropological reports, articles, and commentary
The Wesleyan Anthology pf Science Fiction’s reading list includes many excellent works that may enhance your research. Use BU Libraries Search to locate them by title.
Below are works that are accessible to Boston University students. Click on the book cover thumbnails to locate the texts.
The Journal of the American Revolution is a visually-engaging free resource that features scholarship, interviews, book reviews, and other media. History teachers can use this material in classrooms to captivate students with the stories and scholarship on this important period of America’s past.
The Mythbuster section brings the reader up to date on the many legends that have not withstood the test of time. There is section specifically dedicated to Scholarship, and another focused on Historic Sites and Events. This site is just one of the useful links on our Resources for Teachers research guide.