Covidence and Rayyan

Liz Kellermeyer, Ben Harnke, Shandra Knight


Health sciences librarians from two institutions conducted an assessment of Covidence, a subscription-based systematic review tool, and Rayyan, a free competitor, for abilities, strengths, and limitations. Covidence mirrors the multiphase review process, including data extraction, directly in its design. Rayyan, on the other hand, does not easily mirror this process and really only aids with the reference screening phases. Rayyan takes a minimalist approach, placing more of the logistical and workflow burden on the users themselves. Many of the peripheral features (e.g., highlighting, tagging, etc.) are comparable. Covidence works well and is well suited for more rigorous systematic reviews, where methodology must be adhered to and documented at each stage. In spite of some limited functionality and clunky features, Rayyan is a good free alternative for article screening and works as a viable upgrade from a workflow using only EndNote and/or Excel.


Systematic Reviews; Citation Management; Web Applications; Screening Tools; Resource Review

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