DescriptionSubmission of two assignments (each not to exceed 3575 words). In each of these the student will describe a particular challenge or aspect of the conduct of a systematic review and present either their way of dealing with this or the approach that they would take to deal with it.The assignment has to be 1500 each separate two assignments that means excluding reference and introduction and graphs
Eligibility (selection) criteria
• Remember: you’re not designing a new study, you have
to cope with what others did in the past in other places in
• Considering the participants you want to include in your
review, would a few that you don’t want ‘contaminate’ the
• If you include a list of interventions, is this a closed list or
some examples (e.g. the beta-blockers or the types of
• Eligibility criteria don’t have to match your question
perfectly. Can you borrow from other areas (such as
melanoma thickness greater than 0.75mm)?
Reasons for searching
• To be comprehensive (find everything)
– Get the correct answer
– Avoid missing something important
– Avoid missing anything
– Have the complete collection (‘stamp collector’)
– Maximise precision and power
– Minimise bias
– Widen and improve applicability or generalisability
– Explore heterogeneity
– Reassure yourself and the reader
to understand publication bias
to decide where to look for studies relevant to your review
to understand the relative merits of different sources of studies
to experience the use of trial registers as a source of studies for reviews
to decide how to determine if a study meets the eligibility criteria for your review
you use up a lot of the word limit in the introductory part, and it would be better to shorten that and to write more about additional searching methods, such as looking through journals or conference proceedings. checking the reference lists of articles you find and searching for unpublished or ongoing studies in trial registries. As I mentioned for your other piece, you should also try to cite the relevant empirical evidence on searching, some of which was in the booklet for the module and there are, for example, Cochrane methodology reviews of topics such as the benefits of handsearching and reference checking.
It would still be worth you adding in some more citations for the empirical research on searching. For example, where you mention that you would check the reference lists of articles, there is a Cochrane Methodology Review about this listed in the module handbook that I sent you.
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