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Med Educ. 1999 Dec;33(12):890-3.

Evidence-based education: development of an instrument to critically appraise reports of educational interventions.

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Department of General Practice, University of Glasgow, 4 Lancaster Crescent, Glasgow G12 0RR, UK.



Educational interventions may ultimately impact on patient care as well as affecting individuals' learning. Critical evaluation of educational literature by those involved in designing and developing educational interventions is therefore important. A checklist instrument for critically appraising reports of educational interventions is described.


The instrument was developed by an iterative process and piloted. The instrument consists of nine questions: 1. Is there a clear question which the study seeks to answer? 2. Is there a clear learning need which the intervention seeks to address? 3. Is there a clear description of the educational context for the intervention? 4. Is the precise nature of the intervention clear? 5. Is the study design able to answer the question posed by the study? 6. Are the methods within the design capable of appropriately measuring the phenomena which the intervention ought to produce? 7. Are the outcomes chosen to evaluate the intervention appropriate? 8. Are there any other explanations of the results explored in the study? 9. Are any unanticipated outcomes explained? A worked example is given to illustrate how the instrument can be used in practice.


The Department of General Practice in Glasgow.


Young general practitioners and the Educational Journal Club.


The instrument was feasible.


The use of the checklist allows the reader to critically appraise reports of educational interventions and helps in the practice of evidence-based education.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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