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Systematic Reviews for the Health Sciences: Protocol

Protocol - What is it?

Protocols typically include:

  • Rationale
  • Research Question
  • Criteria for inclusion/exclusion of studies in the review
  • Types of studies, populations, interventions, outcome measures considered
  • Search strategy to identify studies
  • Selection methods for studies
  • Assessment method of quality
  • Data Extraction and synthesis methods
  • Timeframe for conducting review

Example Protocols

Protocol Registration - Why?

  • Avoid duplicating others' work​

  • Reduces bias with transparent methods

  • May be required by journal before submitting a systematic review