References and screening

Reference management and the screening process

Search results identified by the search strategies developed for the review can be provided as EndNote-Library or RIS-file, depending on your preferences. A RIS-file can be imported into virtually any reference management software, e.g. EndNote or the freely available software Zotero.

Reference management software makes it easy to screen references and classify them into different groups (e.g. inclusion/exclusion/discussion). It also enables you to search through references quickly. Some programs only handle the citations themselves, while other programs allow the full texts of citations to be attached and searched, which is very handy for screening purposes.

A comparison of different reference management software is offered by the University Library of the Technical University of Munich. This document compares features, handling and licence and pricing models of reference management applications.

As a nice alternative to EndNote we recommend Rayyan for screening purposes. The tool is available for free, offers a blinding function and facilitates the consensus process.

Reduction of irrelevant references

The search results provided to you by the CMED group are deduplicated. Unfortunately this process is not completely reliable, so you might still identify some duplicate references in your results set while screening.

For review topics encompassing a substantial amount of references (1000+) we make use of Cochrane┬┤s new Screen4Me service. This service usually reduces the amount of references to screen to around 1/4 to 1/3 of the total results set.