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Systematic Reviews And Other Review Types

This guide will assist you in starting your systematic, scoping and other reviews.

Evaluation/Critical Appraisal

To deep dive an article and assess it for possible biases and worth as a piece of academic research, a wide variety of critical appraisal tools are made available from the following reputable sources:  Joanna Briggs institute (JBI) is an international research organization based in the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences at the University of Adelaide, South Australia. JBI develops and delivers unique evidence-based information, software, education and training designed to improve healthcare practice and health outcomes. Cochrane is an international network but with headquarters in the UK, it is registered as a not for profit organization. Cochrane is for anyone interested in using high-quality information to make health decisions. Whether you are a doctor or nurse, or patient, researcher or funder, Cochrane evidence provides a powerful tool to enhance your healthcare knowledge and decision making. The Critical Appraisals Skills Programme (CASP) has over 27 years of significant expertise in the delivery of training to healthcare professionals. CASP has a series of easy to use checklists to help you read research.


To determine whether an article is scholarly or not, try employing the C.R.A.P. acronym.

Image showing letters forming the acronym CRAP

C = Currency, is the article recent?

                (Librarian note* citations are also worth checking--do they work? Do they lead to reputable sources?)

A = Authority, who wrote the information - are they an expert or knowledgeable in their field? 

R = Reliable, Is the information supported by evidence? Can it be confirmed by other sources?

P = Purpose, Why was it written? To sell something? To sway opinion? Is it biased toward a particular point of view? 

               (Librarian note* publisher is also worth checking--are they a reputable source?)



Evidence Pyramid Example

Evidence Pyramid: Dartmouth & Yale