I want to know how the authors of a review article prepare a table of other articles' results. Actually I want to know the process of collecting other articles' results. Do they do this by collecting results of articles one by one or do they use software for collecting data of other articles all together?

Thanks for any suggestions.

  • I have to guess that there as many "methods" as their are authors.
    – Buffy
    Apr 26 at 13:16
  • Welcome to our community! However I think you'll have to provide an example, if you want a good answer. Aug 16 at 17:49

It will obviously depend on the particular review, and what type of data they are collating. Data published in academic papers doesn't tend to be in a standardised format, so scraping it automatically wouldn't really work.

On the other hand, if the data is all in a central database then it will be easier to write a script to collect the data. For example, if the data was DNA sequence data in GenBank, there are set fields where the data is stored and scraping it using software is more straightforward.


One approach that I have seen (but I don't know how common it is) is to use a qualitative data analysis tool like MaxQDA. Basically you would store all papers in the QDA library and use the tool to highlight relevant text fragments, then to (more or less) inductively group them into categories, and then to compare them along categories and to explore their relations.

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