Writing a systematic review is one of the most challenging aspects of the academic process. With Doing a Systematic Review: A Student’s Guide, Angela Boland, M. Gemma Cherry and Rumona Dickson aim to offer a detailed and effective guide to writing a successful systematic review. This takes the book beyond the usual “How to…” literature, and makes it a valuable resource for both students as well as more experienced researchers, writes Sophie Lecheler.
This review originally appeared on LSE Review of Books.
Doing a Systematic Review: A Student’s Guide. Angela Boland, M. Gemma Cherry & Rumona Dickson (eds.). SAGE. November 2013.
There are many books published on the question of how to write a systematic review. So, what does this book bring to the table?
Initially, it offers the usual themes relevant for writing a review: a general introduction (Chapter one), a guide towards formulating research questions (Chapter two), finding literature (Chapter three), analysing and discussing this literature (Chapters four, five and six), coming to appropriate conclusions (Chapter seven) and how to time manage writing a systematic review (Chapter ten). It also offers some insights into the difference between reviewing qualitative and quantitative literature (Chapter eight), albeit from the perspective of a discipline that largely relies on quantitative methods (health-related research). Finally, there is a chapter on conducting a review on economic evaluations (Chapter nine), which is arguably less interesting for students in other disciplines. This is an edited book, so each chapter is written by a different team of authors – almost all of which specialise in systematic reviews and are members of the Liverpool Reviews and Implementation Group at the University of Liverpool.