Skip to Main Content

Research Guides

Systematic Reviews and Related Evidence Syntheses

Review Types

Literature (Narrative) Review

A broad term referring to reviews with a wide scope and non-standardized methodology.

  • Search strategies, comprehensiveness, and time range covered vary and do not follow an established protocol.


Rapid Review

Applies systematic review methodology within a time-constrained setting.


Scoping Review or Systematic Map

Systematically and transparently collects and categorizes existing evidence on a broad topic.


Umbrella Review

Reviews other systematic reviews on a topic.


Systematic Review

A methodical and comprehensive literature synthesis focused on a well-formulated research question. 

  • Aims to identify and synthesize all of the scholarly research on a particular topic, including both published and unpublished studies.
  • Conducted in an unbiased, reproducible way to provide evidence for practice and policy-making.
  • May involve a meta-analysis.
  • Much more time-intensive than traditional literature reviews.



A statistical technique for combining the findings from disparate quantitative studies.

  • Uses statistical methods to objectively evaluate, synthesize, and summarize results.
  • May be conducted independently or as part of a systematic review.