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Systematic Searching Support

Hardin Systematic Searching Service

We offer free systematic searching services to University of Iowa faculty, fellows, residents, staff, and students. 

Levels of Service

  • Training  We can provide training in a variety of areas: identifying searching sources, conducting effective database searching, using citation management tools, provide feedback on a researcher-created search strategies. This level is appropriate for all researchers. 
  • Consulting We can work with you, via in-person or virtual consultations, to develop search strategies and provide training on other aspect of the project. The level is appropriate for all researchers, and crediting the librarian by an acknowledgment may be appropriate.* 
  • Collaboration At this level, we may perform all or many of these tasks: generate search terms, design search strategies, execute search strategies, manage citations, remove duplicates, find full text, develop a flow diagram, and write the search methodology. This level is most appropriate for faculty projects, and the librarian usually should be credited as a coauthor.*

*We welcome conversations about service levels for all researchers as well as acknowledgment and coauthorship. The appropriate level of service and credit may vary by project. Your librarian will discuss these topics with you in more detail. For guidance about authorship roles, please see Defining the Role of Authors and Contributors from the Internal Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE).  

Benefits of Librarian-Supported Reviews

Projects completed with librarian support have been associated with higher quality search strategies and reporting of search methods. 

Li, L., Tian, J., Tian, H., Moher, D., Liang, F., Jiang, T., Yao, L., & Yang, K. (2014). Network meta-analyses could be improved by searching more sources and by involving a librarian. Journal of Clinical Epidemiology, 67(9), 1001–1007. View full text

Koffel, J. B. (2015). Use of recommended search strategies in systematic reviews and the impact of librarian involvement: A cross-sectional survey of recent authors. PloS One, 10(5), e0125931. View full text   

Rethlefsen, M. L., Farrell,  A. M., Osterhaus Trzasko, L. C., & Brigham, T. J. (2015). Librarian co-authors correlated with higher quality reported search strategies in general internal medicine systematic reviews. Journal of Clinical Epidemiology, 68(6), 617–26. View full text