Cochrane Training Courses 2015

Opening Date: 14 April 2015

Closing Date: Monday 11 May 2015

What is the aim of the courses?

The aim of the Cochrane Training Courses is to build awareness and capacity in conducting and using systematic reviews in the island of Ireland. The HRB and the HSC Research & Development Division in Northern Ireland (HSC R&D Division), in association with the Training Team of Cochrane Ireland and the UK Cochrane Centre, offer the traditional two-day course and a new suite of one-day courses on a number of dates in 2015.

What training courses are on offer?

A. Two-day Cochrane Systematic Review Course
The two-day training course will continue to be offered as it has in recent years. This intensive two-day course will cover systematic review methodologies and critical appraisal skills. The course is suitable for individuals working in the health and social care area who are planning to conduct a systematic review themselves and require more detailed knowledge of systematic reviews.
The proposed dates and venues for the two-day courses are as follows:

  • Cork – 2 & 3 June 2015
  • Galway – 25 & 26 June 2015
  • Belfast – 2 & 3 September 2015
  • Dublin –  19 & 20 October 2015

B. New one-day Cochrane Course options
These four new courses will be provided between September and the end of the 2015. Courses I and II are intended for those with no experience conducting systematic reviews and are not planning to conduct one themselves, but want to use the evidence they contain. Courses III and IV are intended for those with at least some systematic review experience and who are planning to conduct a systematic review.

I. The Cochrane Library and other databases. The course will provide an introduction to using the Cochrane Library and interpreting Cochrane systematic reviews. Other databases will be examined also. Database searching skills will be presented and used, including the use of MeSH search terms, Boolean characters and developing search strategies. The course is intended for individuals who may not be planning to conduct a systematic review themselves at this point.

II. Critical appraisal of systematic reviews and different types of study designs. The course is suitable for individuals for those who may not be planning do a systematic review at this point, but need to interpret and use their findings. Methods of evaluating the strengths and weaknesses of various trial types will be examined. The international standards for reporting various types ofstudies we will be reviewing.

III. Systematic reviews of non-randomised studies of the effects of interventions. The course is suitable for individuals who are considering conducting systematic reviews of studies examining the effects of interventions with non-randomised designs, e.g. controlled before-and-after studies, cohort studies, interrupted-time-series. These types of reviews are more complex and challenging than other reviews and therefore those taking this course should have some experience of systematic reviewing. The methods of these reviews will be covered, including methods of assessing risk of bias in non-randomised trials. The focus will be on outcomes measuring the effects of interventions.

IV. Updating Cochrane reviews. The course is available only to authors of Cochrane reviews who are planning to update their review. The material will cover recent developments in Cochrane reviews and serve to refresh authors’ skills in Cochrane methods.

How to apply for a place on these training courses

Those interested in attending any one of the four new one-day courses should complete the application form and identify their 1st and 2nd preferences. Applicants will be informed in early June of the course, date and location they are being offered. Cochrane training is always heavily over-subscribed, so applicants will be offered a place on one course only in one year. Offers must be accepted within two weeks or the place will be offered to another applicant.

To apply for the one and two-day courses, the application form below must be downloaded, completed and submitted to Cochrane Ireland. NOTE: Do not submit the application form to the HRB or R&D offices. Applications must be submitted on the appropriate Cochrane Ireland application form. The application form and guidance notes are available at the links below.

Completed application forms should be sent by email to:

Applicants will be informed about their success in attaining a place on these courses as soon as possible after the deadline.

When is the deadline for applications?

The deadline is end of business on Monday 11 May 2015. Applications will not be accepted after this deadline. Further information is available in the guidelines document below.

Contact: Dónal O’Mathúna at

Related Documents (please note, the application form must be downloaded, completed offline and emailed as an attachment):

Download Guidance Notes 2015

Download Application Form 2015