Academic Clinical Fellows (ACF) course

workshop image

Evidence-based decision-making, critical appraisal skills and leadership: a course for NIHR Academic Clinical Fellows (ACFs)

Effective, high quality, evidence-based practice is at the heart of the modern NHS. Practitioners require a thorough understanding of the principles of evidence-based decision-making, and the critical appraisal skills that underlie the evaluation and synthesis of evidence. The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) invited Cochrane UK to develop this course for those non-medical professional health researchers in training (today’s non-medical doctoral fellowship trainees and tomorrow’s clinical leaders) who will be in key positions to promote and implement such practice in the future.

 The course recognizes that NIHR trainees are likely to be future leaders in health care both in the UK and potentially around the world. For this reason, a significant leadership development programme has been included in the course. The faculty has also decided to place the course in a university environment to encourage critical thinking of current accepted ideas. Furthermore, key faculty members attend the whole course, including evening social occasions to get to know the delegates and create an environment where both faculty and delegates can exchange ideas and advice about careers and research topics and any other topics of interest. The success of this approach is reflected in feedback previous courses, which includes comments such as “personal, individual and open”, “collaborative rather than competitive”, “good thinking time, informal, facilitative and questioning in a good learning environment”, and “very approachable faculty”. We are looking for delegates who feel comfortable with this approach and who can bring experiences and ideas to the course.


NIHR Academic Clinical Fellows


  • Principles of evidence-based decision-making
  • Critical-appraisal skills
  • Systematic reviews in general and Cochrane in particular
  • Implementation of best-evidence in day-to-day clinical practice 
  • An introduction to the principles of self-directed professional learning

Click here to see an example course timetable.

Venue and course dates

Venue and dates for the next ACF course have yet to be confirmed. 

Oxford Park and Ride information, click here



If you are a successful applicant, we will email you payment details through PayPal (you do not need a PayPal account to complete the transaction). Payment is due within 30 days. Unfortunately we will need to withdraw the offer of a place if payment is not made.

Cancellation Policy

Cancellations received within two weeks of the course will not be refunded, cancellations before this date will be refunded minus a £20 administration fee. 


Cochrane UK


T 01865 516 300