Evidence Synthesis Methods Interest Group

 View Only
last person joined: 6 days ago 

Charge: To promote and develop competencies around evidence synthesis including systematic reviews, meta-analyses, scoping reviews, and other related methods of research synthesis, through activities such as: Facilitating discussion and peer-support; Creating and managing a resource page; Encouraging programming and publications around systematic reviews through ACRL.
Community members can post as a new Discussion or email ALA-acrlesmig@ConnectedCommunity.org
Before you post: please note job postings are prohibited on ALA Connect. Please see the Code of Conduct for more information.
  • 1.  Terminology Question

    Posted Apr 27, 2023 11:44 AM

    Hi everyone,

    Sort of a random question for the day...which umbrella terminology do you favor - knowledge synthesis, evidence synthesis, something else - and why?

    I'll note, I've been using Evidence Synthesis literally just because that is in my new job title. But as I'm expanding though working with various group across campus, especially those outside the health sciences, I'm thinking more about how this terminology 'reads' to them. I'm also working with many groups where their scholarly traditions in methodologically sound evidence synthesis are...developing, shall we say. So I find myself saying thing like "systematic evidence synthesis" to help them jump from a recognizable concept  (systematic reviews) to newer concept (a family of review types done systematically but not in precisely the same way).

    Anyway, I though a nice existential question on a Thursday at the end of the semester could be fun ;)


    Anna Ferri, MLIS, MEd
    pronouns: she/her(s)
    Assistant Professor | Evidence Synthesis Librarian
    Colorado State University Libraries
    P: 970-491-1146 | anna.ferri@colostate.edu
    1201 Center Avenue Mall | Fort Collins, CO 80523

  • 2.  RE: Terminology Question

    Posted Apr 29, 2023 02:10 PM

    I prefer Evidence Synthesis and have tried to use it more consistently now (instead of flip-flopping between ES and KS), but I've had discussions with other librarians about whether Knowledge Synthesis is better. I'll be curious to see other responses.

    Zahra Premji
    Health Research Librarian
    University of Victoria Libraries

  • 3.  RE: Terminology Question

    Posted May 01, 2023 07:33 AM
    Edited by Courtney Brombosz May 01, 2023 07:33 AM

    Great question and one that we've mulled over in my institution. We currently present it as Evidence Synthesis for a number of reasons. The biggest one was that Systematic Review became an umbrella term for ALL reviews a researcher was conducting. Since researchers inherently equate SR's to evidence, it seemed the best way to market our services to our community. I also prefer Knowledge Synthesis for teaching those not familiar with EBP. 

    This does highlight a larger issue of librarian vocabulary and the barriers it creates for those who could utilize the library. I am focused on first gen student needs; this is a huge issue I see repeatedly. So, in light of the previous paragraph, does that reasoning work to engage our library users better? I'll report back :) 

    Courtney Brombosz
    Research and Education Librarian
    Yale University