In collaboration with the Department of Clinical Research (DKF), we offer methodological and statistical support in all phases of your project.
1. Your Team & Funding
In addition to content experts, international standards and handbooks recommend the inclusion of other experts into the review team, namely methodologists, information specialists, and statisticians. For systematic review authors who are planning to work with us, we and the DKF also offer support for grant applications, e.g. by performing a scoping search or calculating a sample size.
2. Developing Your Research Question
We and the DKF offer support for defining a precise research question (e.g. following the population-intervention-control-outcome scheme). We also help identifying systematic reviews and systematic review protocols that are relevant to your topic.
3. Choosing a Review Type & Registering Your Protocol
We offer support for selecting a suitable type of review (e.g. systematic review, scoping review, rapid review). Reporting guidelines encourage the registration of systematic review protocols (e.g. according to PRISMA-P). We support such registrations in the PROSPERO Systematic Review Protocol Registry.
4. Searching & Search Management
- Searching bibliographic databases (Medline, Embase, Cochrane Library, Cinahl, PsycInfo, Web of Science etc.)
- Searching in clinical trials registries (e.g. ClinicalTrials.gov) and for gray literature
- Citation tracking (snowballing-techniques)
- Export to EndNote and deduplication of results
- See our educational programme (German and English) and tutorials (currently only German)
5. Screening & Documentation
We and the DKF offer help with the initial screening of results (title, abstract) and the documentation of the review process. For members of the University of Basel, since 2023, we are providing access to Covidence, a web-based software platform that optimally supports the review process from screening to data extraction. Further information on joining the institutional Covidence account of the University of Basel can be found here.
6. Appraising the Quality, Risk of Bias
For help with quality appraisal or risk of bias assessment, see the DKF website.
7. Synthesizing the Evidence, Meta-Analysis
For help with descriptive or statistical evaluation (meta-analysis), and data interpretation, see the DKF website.
Depending on what we supported you with, we write the corresponding sections in the Methods and Results according to PRISMA, in particular PRISMA-S. An overview of predatory open access journals is provided here.
On request, we also process mediated searches for study types other than Systematic Reviews.
Dr. Hannah Ewald
PD Dr. Christian Appenzeller-Herzog
Dr. Thomas Fürst
Medical Information Specialists
Tel: +41 61 207 55 64
Tel. +41 61 207 31 98
Dr. Robin Segerer
Information Specialist Psychology
Tel. +41 61 207 06 68
To schedule a consulting appointment please fill in the form and send it to: Contact e-mail
University Medical Library
For further information and to schedule a consulting appointment please fill in the form and send it to: Contact e-mail
Courses at University Medical Library
The University Medical Library conducts regular training courses and webinars for databases (PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library) and literature management software.
Support for Searching
Our information specialists offer personal assistance to members of the University of Basel and of the University Hospital Basel who have specific questions about literature searching in medical bibliographic databases.
An introduction to systematic reviewing: From literature search to meta-analysis
Graduate level course (30 student working hours, 2 ECTS) on all steps of Systematic Reviewing.
For members of the University or the University Hospital Basel, the first one-hour consultation, including preparation and follow-up, is free of charge per project. Further services will be invoiced according to a written quote. The hourly rate is CHF 125.- (plus VAT for students). BA/MA students of the University of Basel are granted a 50% discount. The hourly rate for externals is CHF 150.- plus VAT.
Members of the Faculty of Psychology do not have to pay for consultations and mediated searches (maximum time 6 hours). The costs are covered by the Faculty of Psychology.
Extensive search strategies are the very foundation of systematic reviews or similar study types. By designing searches, giving critical conceptual input, drafting method and result paragraphs on this process, and giving final approval of and accountability for the manuscript, our information specialists help ensure high quality standards and reproducibility of the research. In agreement with current guidelines, we consider co-authorship on resulting publications appropriate.