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Guidelines for a Review Paper for APAQ



1. If you offer a narrative discussion of the literature and do not include a statistical analysis from the collection of studies for the purpose of integrating the findings then tell APAQ reviewers the reasoning for doing so.

2. It is essential to tell APAQ about the methods section employed. I suggest you consider:

a. Inclusion Criteria – Prepare this as a separate section. Please address the issue of the "population" of papers including the unpublished papers from proceedings, difficult to locate papers, dissertations, etc. You should justify/explain why you focused on studies in peer reviewed literature. This is a usual expectation. We know one could easily miss a paper presented at a conference that might have good methods etc., and the investigator may never submit it for peer review.

b. Exclusion Criteria – Similarly make a separate section when you describe the types of studies you excluded (i.e., pilot studies, Abstracts, technical reports, dissertations, etc) and provide a rationale.

c. Searching – Please make a header describing the systematic search following the criteria you set with the methodological filter. List the keywords in this section and make a statement about reference tracking on all included studies. It is helpful to include a flow chart demonstrating the search, inclusion and exclusion path with the numbers of citations entering each stage.

d. Blind selection – When the paper is not single-authored, present information that indicates the extent to which co-author decisions were made. APAQ will assume that, among the authors of the manuscript, they are blind to the author and publication year of the paper under review and independently apply the inclusion criteria. Tell APAQ how will disagreements were handled? If more than one person made the decision regarding the inclusion criteria what was the degree of inter-rater agreement across inclusion criteria? If two people disagreed, was a third person used for consensus? Was the results section removed prior to examination so that you could reach a decision based on design and methods?

e. Methodological quality assessment – How did you assess methodological quality? Did you use guidelines or a rubric for systemic review? Did you have quality summary scores to distinguish between high- and low- quality studies? Did you exclude studies of low methodological quality? Please share the details with APAQ.

f. Data evaluation – How will you evaluate those elements from primary studies that are relevant to the research question(s) and establish criteria for judging the adequacy of the procedures used to gather and code the data?

g. Data Analysis and interpretation – Tell APAQ about how, during the presentation analysis and interpretation stage, the separate data points were synthesized into a unified statement about the research questions. It is recommended that you support narrative descriptions with tables summarizing the information under criteria headings such as participants, methods, interventions, results, and conclusions. Will you convert results into a common metric or. . .?

3. Please consider framing the results section with information for headers like: study selection, study description, quality assessment, qualitative analysis, and, if any – quantitative analysis.

4. Discussion section should be followed by the limitations of the review, implications for research, and implications for practice followed by your references and Table (with the authors in alphabetical order).




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