What is Systematic Literature Review?

A systematic literature review is a strategy, means, and practice of collecting, reviewing, and examining a body of literature using a predetermined and systematic strategy. To reduce the final body of the literature, conclusions, conjectures, and information gathering techniques are prepared and used as tools for the process before processing the review. As with a traditional literature review, the aim is to identify and critically evaluate and summarise the current evidence on the identified problems. Systematic reviews follow a clearly outlined convention or plan, with criteria that are clearly articulated or planned before the review is conducted. In simple words, a systematic review is an exhaustive and directed search of various datasets and pieces of background literature that are available for further investigations. It is concerned with creating a convincible reviewed research method that has a specific focus or answers a specific question. The review distinguishes between types of data that have been studied, evaluated, and detailed over a known period. Search terms, search techniques (including record names, search steps, and dates), and limitations must be considered in the review.

A systematic literature review allows us to consider the possibility of contradictory or random results and to identify issues that require further consideration. More importantly, to assess the consistency of evidence and assumptions to clear logical questions, there is also an incorporated way of assessing the consistency of evidence and conjecture, which has equally a significant value in this type of literature review. This strategy is particularly valuable when matching data from several studies addressing similar questions, usually, quite specific experimental questions, such as ”Does a rational-emotional therapy intervention promote well-being in patients who are considered emotionally distressing?”

Difference between Systematic Literature and Literature Review

You can be easily mistaken between systematic reviews and literature reviews, as both are compilations of existing literature and investigation on a particular topic. However, even according to this common understanding, the two types are very different.

Systematic literature review

A systematic literature review is an indisputable summary of the main research on a topic by distinguishing, selecting, synthesising, and evaluating the depth of research on that topic. It is considered the ideal type of literature review, especially for dissemination in high-level clinical journals and the presentations of scientific studies. This review requires intensive information on the topic and it allows to include the searching on all major databases, including statistical test values. The main components of a systematic literature search are an established eligibility model, a systematic review process, an assessment of the validity of the results, an understanding and presentation of the results, and a reference list. The search and screening procedures are described in the technical section of the report, together with the PRISMA outline, the scope of the search is included with a flow chart showing the reasons for including or excluding papers at each stage of the process.

Literature review

A literature review is a subjective compilation of evidence on a particular topic, using random or emotional strategies to gather and decipher evidence. In most cases, it will help you identify patterns and gain a better understanding of the current state of an area and the main underlying issues. In terms of prerequisites, an understanding of the field is very important to search at least one database. It also relies heavily on an empirical selection of recent, first-rate articles on the topic concerned and can or cannot follow predefined rules as in a systematic review. The main components of a literature review are overview, techniques, discussion, conclusion, and bibliography.

How to Conduct a Systematic Literature Review?

Systematic reviews

A systematic review consists of finding adequate answers to questions that are directed towards the research question. To achieve this objective, it is essential that the researcher conducting the systematic review should include and presents all the informative evidence that meets the eligibility criteria for this scientific research. Furthermore, systematic reviews are of particular importance in research areas where substantial work has been done and information has been produced in the past. Thus, in this context, the importance of a systematic review is to consolidate and characterise the research topic by thoroughly examining and evaluating the most recent experimental work on the topic.

Critical review

A critical review is a critical assessment of a proposed study which is reviewed by examining the various academic investigations currently underway on the topic. A critical review represents the analyst’s view of a particular study based on what the analyst knows with certainty and what the analyst further perceives through a critical examination of the data selected concerning the topic. Furthermore, critical review applies to research areas where point-by-point arguments on a particular research topic are needed to be identified to reach an accurate and precise conclusion on the research question. Thus, to facilitate findings, it is necessary to make an explicit and implicit assessment of the large number of accurate studies that have been conducted in regards to the research questions of the study.

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