meta-package: meta: Brief overview of methods and general hints


R package meta is a user-friendly general package providing standard methods for meta-analysis and supporting Schwarzer et al. (2015),


R package meta (Schwarzer, 2007) provides the following meta-analysis methods:

The following more advanced statistical methods are provided by add-on R packages:

See settings.meta to learn how to print and specify default meta-analysis methods used during your R session. For example, the function can be used to specify general settings:

The first command can be used to reproduce meta-analyses from Cochrane reviews conducted with Review Manager 5 (RevMan 5, and specifies to use a RevMan 5 layout in forest plots. The second command can be used to generate forest plots following instructions for authors of the Journal of the American Medical Association (

In addition, settings.meta can be used to change individual settings. For example, the following R command specifies the use of the Hartung-Knapp and Paule-Mandel methods, and the printing of prediction intervals in the current R session for any meta-analysis generated after execution of this command:

Type help(package = "meta") for a listing of R functions available in meta.

Schwarzer (2007) is the preferred citation in publications for meta. Type citation("meta") for a BibTeX entry of this publication.

To report problems and bugs

The development version of meta is available on GitHub


Guido Schwarzer


Schwarzer G (2007), meta: An R package for meta-analysis. R News, 7(3), 40–5.

Schwarzer G, Carpenter JR and Rücker G (2015), Meta-Analysis with R (Use-R!). Springer International Publishing, Switzerland.

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