What is a systematic literature review?

A systematic review of the literature investigates a particular issue by analysing the key findings of existing research. This type of literature review will also be framed around a research issue and research questions or aims, but the source of the data is secondary. In a project that involves the collection of primary data, decisions need to be made regarding how to carry out the research in practice, whereas in a systematic literature review the approach that will be used in critically reviewing the literature needs to be considered. In the field of education a commonly used approach is narrative synthesis, which involves drawing together and analysing the key findings of research. 

Further reading:

How to conduct a systematic or evidence based literature review: Margaret Adolphus