How to search the Registry of Systematic Reviews


General instructions for searching

Users can search the registry by keywords or phrases, author name, journal, dates, or type of systematic review. Users can also search using a combination of these strategies. The search is not case-sensitive (i.e., words or phrases can be entered in uppercase or lowercase format). Click on the "Submit" button to display search results in APA citation format. To view the abstract on one or more records, mark selected records to view or simply click on the APA citation. Users can also view all records by leaving all fields blank and clicking the submit button. To remove search terms click the "Clear Form" button.

Searching by

Key word or phrase

This function will search for words or phrases located in a record's APA citation, abstract, or authors' keyword listings. Authors' keywords are terms assigned by the author or the journal or the bibliographic database indexer to describe the content area of the systematic review. This search engine will search for words, partial words (e.g., rehab), or phrases exactly as entered (e.g., entering "brain injury" will search for "brain injury" but will not search for "brain" and "injury" separately) whether or not the phrase is enclosed in quotation marks. Boolean functions (AND, OR, NOT) can be used to limit or expand the search. See also "using Boolean Operators" below.

Author name

This field includes data on authors (up to 10 authors) for each systematic review. To search by author, type the author's last name (required) and first name or initial (optional) in the search fields. For example, searching by the last name "Smith" will retrieve all systematic reviews with an author or co-author named "Smith". Searching for "Smith, David" will return all records for the author(s) David Smith. By default the author field is connected by AND to the other search fields (ie. keywords, journals, publication date, type of review).

Journal name

The source or journal name for each systematic review is included in the registry (e.g., Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation). Users can select a journal from the drop-down menu. By default the journal field is connected by AND to the other search fields (ie. keywords, author, publication date, type of review).

Publication date

The year of publication is maintained for each record. Users can search the registry by specific year (e.g., 2005) or by date range (e.g., from 2004 to 2006). To search by year, use the drop-down menu to select a four-digit publication year or a range of years. By default the publication date field is connected by AND to the other search fields (ie. keywords, journals, author, type of review).

Type of review

The KTDRR will maintain in this registry records drawn from five sources of systematic reviews. Only reviews salient to disability and rehabilitation research are selected from the sources below for inclusion in KTDRR's Registry of Systematic Reviews.

  1. Cochrane Collaboration Reviews. The KTDRR will collaborate with the Cochrane Collaboration's Rehabilitation and Therapies Field to identify relevant reviews for inclusion in the registry.
  2. Campbell Collaboration Reviews. The KTDRR will collaborate with the Campbell's Education Coordinating Group to facilitate selection of their reviews.
  3. What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) Reviews. WWC is national registry that includes systematic reviews of educational interventions. The KTDRR will identify WWC reviews salient to disability and rehabilitation research and the primary focus areas of NIDILRR.
  4. Published Independent Reviews. The registry will include information on systematic reviews that are published in academic or scientific journals.
  5. Unpublished Independent Reviews. Systematic reviews that are not published in journals (i.e., grey literature) are also eligible for inclusion in the registry. Similar to the other categories described above, all unpublished reviews must be salient to disability and rehabilitation research and the primary focus areas of NIDILRR.

Using Boolean operators

The Boolean connectors AND, OR, and NOT can be used to combine keywords when searching the registry. Use of these operators can make your search more focused, thus yielding more precise search results. Keep in mind that the connectors AND and NOT generally limit your search whereas the connector OR expands it. For example, entering "stroke AND rehabilitation" will retrieve only records containing both "stroke" and "rehabilitation." Conversely, searching for "stroke OR rehabilitation" retrieves records containing either "stroke" or "rehabilitation" or both.