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PRISMA 2020 Diagram: Home

This research guide outlines how to use the PRISMA 2020 Flow Diagram.

Using the PRISMA 2020 Flow Diagram

The Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses, known as PRISMA, was first published in 2009, and in 2020, a substantial update was made to the PRISMA statement. The purpose of conducting a systematic review is to search for relevant data sources, to extract relevant data, and to assess and analyze the data collected. The PRISMA flow diagram records different stages of the research process, beginning with: "These are the databases where I searched for information," and concluding with: "These are the specific reports and studies that I am going to include in my project."

 A full description of the PRISMA 2020 statement is outlined in the article “The PRISMA 2020 statement: An updated guideline for reporting systematic reviews,” published by Page et al. in the Journal of Clinical Epidemiology.

For more information about the PRISMA diagram, visit the PRISMA website. The PRISMA website contains useful information including: 

Additional Assistance

If you are working on a systematic review or meta-analysis and would like additional assistance, Librarians at the Jerry Falwell Library are ready to help you. 

Let us: 

  • Recommend relevant and specific databases
  • Identify keywords and construct detailed searches
  • Teach you how to employ expert search strategies 
  • Assist you in finding relevant articles 
  • Help you export references to RefWorks 

PRISMA Research Aids

Librarians at the Jerry Falwell Library have created an explanatory version of the PRISMA 2020 flow diagram to aid you in your studies.  In addition to the hanout below, a video tutorial is available on completing the flow diagram. 


The Jerry Falwell Library provides all students with access to RefWorks, a citation management service. When using the PRISMA flow diagram, you will need to record all of your search results across databases, and then remove any duplicate search results. You can use RefWorks to keep track of your records and reports, and RefWorks can aid you in deleting duplicate documents. If you are new to RefWorks, view this video tutorial to get started. After exporting your references to RefWorks, view this tutorial on deleting duplicate references in RefWorks.