Skip to Main Content

Shimberg Health Sciences Library & Florida Blue Health Knowledge Exchange

GME Research Guide

Graduate Medical Education resources

Systematic Review Process

The Systematic Review Process

  • Identify an answerable problem or question that would fill a meaningful gap in the literature
  • Define inclusion/exclusion criteria
  • Develop a review protocol
  • Create searches to locate studies
  • Select relevant studies
  • Extract data from individual studies
  • Appraise the quality of the research
  • Synthesize and summarize the findings of studies
  • Write the manuscript

Before starting your review -  determine if a SR is the best approach to answer your question. 

  • Will it fill a meaningful gap in existing literature?
  • Is there already an existing review? 
    • If you identify an existing review, assess its quality.
    • If a high quality review exists but was completed several years ago, a new review may be justified.
  • Is another type of review a better fit?
  • Do you have the necessary time and resources to complete a systematic review?




The pages under the category of Systematic Review Process were created using the University of Maryland Health Sciences and Human Services Library's guide on their Systematic Review Service, with their permission (

More on Systematic Reviews