May 25, 2022

Journal Article: “A Content Analysis of Systematic Review Online Library Guides”

The article linked below was recently published by Evidence Based Library and Information Practice (EBLIP).



Jennifer Lee
University of Calgary

K. Alix Hayden
University of Calgary

Heather Ganshorn
University of Calgary

Helen Pethrick
University of Calgary


Evidence Based Library and Information Practice (EBLIP)
Vol. 16 No. 1 (2021)
DOI: 10.18438/eblip29819


Objective – Online library guides can serve as resources for students and researchers conducting systematic literature reviews. There is a need to develop learner-centered library guides to build capacity for systematic review skills. The objective of this study was to explore the content of existing systematic review library guides at research universities.

Methods – We conducted a content analysis of systematic review library guides from English-speaking universities. We identified 18 institutions for inclusion using a Scopus search to find the institutions with the highest number of systematic review publications. We conducted a content analysis of those institutions’ library guides, coding for the types of resources included, and the stage of the systematic review process to which they referred. A chi-square test was used to determine whether the differences in distribution of the resource types within each systematic review stage were statistically significant.

Results – The most common type of resource was informational in content. Only 24% of the content analysed was educational. The most common stage of the systematic review process was conducting searches. The chi-square test revealed significant differences for seven of the nine systematic review stages.

Conclusion – We found that many library guides were heavily informational and lacking in instructional and skills focused content. There is a significant opportunity for librarians to turn their systematic review guides into practical learning tools through the development and assessment of online instructional tools to support student and researcher learning.

Direct to Full Text Article

Direct to Full Text Article
18 pages; PDF.

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.