A review article provides an overview of what's been written about a specific topic. Different review types vary in terms of purpose, methodology, comprehensiveness, and study types included.
Although publication as a free standing review is sometimes the goal, many literature reviews in the health sciences serve as support for grant applications, clinical study background, book chapters, quality improvement work, or evidence based practice projects. Students in the health sciences prepare literature reviews for a variety of purposes. This guide is intended to provide resources and tools to support all types of literature reviews in the health sciences and is intended for students, staff, or faculty.
Aim: To explore and/or summarize the literature to provide an overview of a topic. May include a variety of subjects, and may or may not include an analysis of research findings. No specific standards exist for conduct or reporting, and as a result, methodology is determined by the authors, which can introduce bias, and may not review all literature on the topic.
Synonyms: overview, review, clinical review, literature review, expert review
Notes about Methodology
Below is a reference that may serve as an example of a quality project.
Motlagh, M., Fortenbach, C., Maibach, H. I., & Modjtahedi, B. S. (2021). Identifying and treating ocular manifestations in psoriasis. American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, 10.1007/s40257-021-00648-x. View full text
A systematic review is a specific type of study, usually published as an article, that follows a specific methodology and reporting standards. This study type includes an exhaustive search. A systematic search can mean different things to different people. For the purposes of this guide, systematic search refers to the specialized type of searching completed for systematic review and other evidence synthesis projects.
Grant, M. J., & Booth, A. (2009). A typology of reviews: an analysis of 14 review types and associated methodologies. Health Info Libr J, 26(2), 91-108. Sutton, A., Clowes, M., Preston, L., & Booth, A. (2019). Meeting the review family: exploring review types and associated information retrieval requirements. Health Info Libr J, 36(3), 202-222.
Sutton, A., Clowes, M., Preston, L., & Booth, A. (2019). Meeting the review family: exploring review types and associated information retrieval requirements. Health Info Libr J, 36(3), 202-222.
Whittemore, R., Chao, A., Jang, M., Minges, K. E., & Park, C. (2014). Methods for knowledge synthesis: an overview. Heart Lung, 43(5), 453-461.