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Gumberg Library Policies

Faculty Librarian Participation in Systematic and Advanced Reviews 


Systematic review is a well-established research and teaching method that is becoming important at Duquesne for faculty and students in the health and social sciences, education, and other disciplines. The documented role of the librarian in SR standards[1] demonstrates the value librarians add to the research process and responsibility of the library to support SRs with expert staff and appropriately targeted collections. Expert support for systematic and other advanced literature reviews is a strategic priority for Gumberg Library. This policy addresses the current process and procedures for librarian participation in all types of advanced literature reviews, collectively referred to here as SRs. 


  • Librarians who have completed training in conducting systematic reviews will assist Duquesne faculty and students with the research for SRs.
  • Gumberg Library offers two levels of collaboration for systematic reviews: 
    • Research team member: a librarian who designs and conducts comprehensive literature searches for a systematic review makes a major significant scholarly contribution to the project. For this level of collaboration, Gumberg Library expects that the librarian will write the section of the manuscript that describes the literature search methodology and will be a co-author on the primary manuscript arising from the project. 
    • Expert consultant: the librarian will provide advice and consultation on search strategies, controlled vocabularies, and database selection to researchers who choose to plan to design and conduct their own literature searches. For this level of collaboration, Gumberg Library’s expectation is that the librarian will receive an acknowledgement on the primary manuscript arising from the project.
  • Librarians will have the right to decline to participate in a review, if in the librarian’s judgment, the review is not feasible due to the proposed timeline or the proposed questions, or the researcher’s unwillingness or inability to follow relevant SR standards.
  • Systematic review services are free for Duquesne University faculty, students, and staff. The Library charges fee of $55 an hour for non-Duquesne entities, however the initial consultation is free.
  • Duquesne faculty may choose to include funding for systematic review services in their grant proposals if this is considered an allowable expense by the funding agency. However, the library must provide a budget estimate for the systematic review services prior to the grant’s submission.  



[1] Institute of Medicine. (2011). Finding what works in health care: Standards for systematic reviews. Washington, DC: National Academies Press. [Standard 3.1 and related requirements in Standards 2.1 and 3.4]

Revised July 24, 2017
Revised December 15, 2016