Key Facts

Module Title: Evidence Based Medicine
Mode of Study:This module can be taken independently or as part of the Masters in Medical Science
Contact Details:Malgosia Phillips - 01782 734933
Faculty: Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences
Fees: Click for details

This face-to-face learning module introduces the main concepts and basic skills of practising evidence-based medicine in clinical practice. Participants will learn the steps of identifying important clinical queries and converting them into specific questions that can be used to search for evidence. Learning will include the areas of the skills to develop search strategies, the ability of choosing the most appropriate study design to answer a specific question, and the techniques of critical appraisal of the evidence and concluding the cycle by making the final judgement of applying the evidence in practice.  Learning in this module will include theoretical tutorials, problem solving exercises, small group learning and exercises and practical hands on database search and presentations.

The overall aims of this module are to enable participants who will successfully complete the module to:

  • Understand the concept of evidence based medicine and its relevance to clinical practice.
  • Structure clinical queries into clinical questions in a format that enables the search for evidence.
  • Carry out an efficient literature search using computer based methods.
  • Critically appraise identified evidence based on the type of study.
  • Learn the skills of searching for evidence and critically appraise it while working with the time and resource restraints that are common in current clinical practice.
  • Understand basic and common concepts in applied statistical analysis
  • Make the judgment for the application of evidence in clinical practice

Suggested core readings:

  • Editorial by Dave Sackett: Sackett DL, Rosenberg WM, Gray JA, Haynes RB, Richardson WS. Evidence based medicine: what it is and what it isn't. BMJ. 1996 Jan 13;312(7023):71-2.
  • How to teach and practice evidence-based medicine. Sackett D et al. Churchill Livingstone 1997.
  • How to read a paper.  Greenhalgh Trish, BMJ publications 1997.

This module is open to practising health professionals with a first degree or equivalent.

This is a face-to-face module, over two blocks of two days each. It covers theoretical plenary tutorials to outline and explain the main steps of practising evidence based medicine; key methods of conducting electronic literature search; explaining the key steps of the critical appraisal of most common types of studies including randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of interventions, systematic reviews of RCTs, diagnostic studies and prognosis studies. The practical workshops include rapid conversion of clinical queries into searchable questions using the PICO method; hands on literature search; critical appraisal of studies against the clock and designing an RCT. Participants will also participate in explaining and discussing common statistical concepts.


-          24 hours face to face learning.

-          14 hours small group exercises and discussions.

-          Four 1 hour tutorials.

-          32 hours directed learning.

-          20 hours self-directed learning.

-          56 hours assessment writing.



Assessment will be based on submission of a written assignment which should not exceed 4000 words.


Module Session Dates

For module session dates please contact administrator.