Symposium 2019 Workshops Day 2 11.30am-1.00pm

Day 2 Workshops Friday 22nd March 11.30am-1.00pm

Workshop 9:  Common challenges in Cochrane Reviews of Diagnostic Test Accuracy

Edmond Safra Lecture Theatre


This workshop, organized by the Cochrane Diagnostic Test Accuracy (DTA) Editorial Team, will offer guidance, as formulated in the Handbook for Diagnostic Test Accuracy Reviews, for aspects of DTA Reviews that pose particular challenges when tailoring DTA Review methods to individual review topics.

Managers of the Cochrane DTA Editorial Team will also be on hand to answer questions about the editorial process.  The workshop will draw on the experience of the DTA Editorial Team as well as facilitators’ own experience of undertaking DTA reviews across a breadth of topic areas. The workshop will also draw on recently published PLS Guidance for DTA reviews.  The workshop will be delivered through a mixture of interactive presentations, discussions and small group exercises.

The workshop is aimed at editorial base staff, authors and others planning or currently undertaking a diagnostic test accuracy review, with a minimum basic knowledge of DTA methods, who wish to anticipate, prepare for and/or engage with common challenges encountered when conducting Cochrane DTA reviews.

Learning Objectives

The facilitators can tailor the workshop to accommodate the needs of individuals attending as far as possible but plan to address the following four topics: 

  • tailoring QUADAS-2 for quality assessment
  • planning and undertaking statistical analyses
  • constructing Summary of Findings tables
  • writing Plain Language Summaries (PLS)


Yemisi Takwoingi and Clare Davenport

Yemisi Takwoingi

Yemisi is a Senior Research Fellow in Biostatistics in the Test Evaluation Research Group (TERG) based within the Institute of Applied Health Research at the University of Birmingham. She co-convenes the Cochrane Screening and Diagnostic Tests Methods Group and is an editor in two Cochrane Review Groups. Her main research interest is in methods for systematic reviews of diagnostic test accuracy (DTA) studies, and the design and conduct of primary studies of medical tests. She provides statistical input/lead on various national and international collaborations undertaking systematic reviews and primary studies of tests in a variety of healthcare topics. She teaches medical statistics to undergraduate maths students and also delivers continuing proffessional development (CPD) courses and workshops internationally. TERG organizes methodological peer review and editorial approval for the publication of Cochrane Diagnostic Test Accuracy (DTA) Protocols and Reviews, and she contributes to this activity as a DTA editor and peer reviewer.

Clare Davenport

Clare is a public health physician and senior clinical lecturer in the Institute of Applied Health Research at the University of Birmingham. She is a member of the University of Birmingham Test Evaluation Research Group (TERG) and in this role undertakes peer review of and supports primary and secondary test evaluation projects. She also undertakes peer review and is a Contact Editor for the Cochrane Diagnostic Test Accuracy Editorial Team. Her main research interests are the development of methods for undertaking DTA reviews, in particular, their application and dissemination.  Clare teaches epidemiology to undergraduate medical students, methods for test evaluation to Masters students and contributes to CPD courses and workshops on DTA review methods internationally.

Workshop 10:  The Evidence Pipeline: innovation in study identification

Lecture Theatre 05


Machine learning and citizen science initiatives within Cochrane are transforming Cochrane’s centralized efforts to identify reports of trials. The Randomized Controlled Trial (RCT) Classifier and Cochrane Crowd are highly accurate and efficient at distinguishing between records which are likely to describe RCTs and those which are not. ‘Screen4Me’ is a new service that enables individual Cochrane Reviews to take advantage of the efficiencies that this combination of human and machine effort offers in individual reviews.

The workshop will begin with a brief presentation of the Screen4Me workflow and the work conducted to date. The main part of the workshop will be hands-on. Participants working individually or in small groups will be supplied with a practice dataset representing the search results for a Cochrane Review. They will have the opportunity to send these results through the Screen4Me workflow in the Cochrane Register of Studies (CRS) Web. Within the workflow, they will see the output from the RCT Classifier, as well as set up a task for Cochrane Crowd. The final 20 minutes of the workshop will be a question and answer discussion session.

This workshop is primarily aimed at Cochrane information specialists and Cochrane Review authors.

Learning objectives

At the end of the workshops participants will:

  • know when Screen4Me is appropriate to use 
  • gain a good understanding of the Screen4Me workflow 
  • try out the services on a training dataset 
  • discuss the range of possible use cases for these new tools
  • feed into further development of the tools


Anna Noel-Storr, James Thomas and Gordon Dooley

Anna Noel-Storr

Anna is an information specialist with the Cochrane Dementia and Cognitive Improvement Group based at Oxford University. She is also the Cochrane Crowd Lead. Cochrane Crowd is Cochrane's crowdsourcing platform where contributors from around the world dive into a range of tasks helping to identify health evidence. Over the last few years much of Anna's work has focused on the interaction between human and machine effort in evidence synthesis.

James Thomas

James is the Director of the Evidence for Policy and Practice Information (EPPI) Co-ordinating Centre's PPI-Centre's Reviews Facility for the Department of Health, England, Co-Senior Editor on the Cochrane Handbook, Co-Convenor of the Qualitative and Implementation Methods Group, and undertakes research on the use of new technologies in systematic reviews. He is Co-Lead of Cochrane Project Transform which is implementing novel technologies and processes to improve the efficiency of systematic reviews.

Gordon Dooley

Gordon is Managing Director of Metaxis Ltd and Technical Director of Update Software Ltd, software companies that have provided bespoke programming for Cochrane since its inception. Gordon works on many different parts of the Cochrane tech ecosystem, most recently on Cochrane Crowd and the Cochrane Register of Studies. In his spare time he is a bookbinder and photographer.

Workshop 11:  Common errors in Cochrane Reviews of Interventions

Seminar Room A


This workshop will be presented by Associate Editors and a Statistical Editor from the Editorial & Methods Department. It will provide a high-level view over some of the most commonly encountered methodological issues in systematic reviews. 

Learning Objectives

Participants will learn how to spot and address errors arising from the unit of analysis and subgroup analysis, Summary of Findings tables and inconsistencies in reporting. 

The workshop is for editors, managing editors and authors


Liz Bickerdike, Kerry Dwan, Sarah Hodgkinson and Nuala Livingstone

Liz Bickerdike

Liz is an Associate Editor supporting the Acute and Emergency Care Network and the Long-term Conditions and Ageing Network. Liz joined the Cochrane Editorial and Methods Department in October 2015 from the Centre for Reviews and Dissemination at the University of York, where she was a Research Fellow in Knowledge Translation. Liz was previously a Managing Editor for the Cochrane Heart Group and for the systematic review producer, Bazian. She also has experience of producing a systematic review for guidelines in women and children’s health for the UK body National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE).

Kerry Dwan

Kerry is a statistical editor with the Cochrane Editorial and Methods Department (EMD). She graduated from the University of Liverpool in 2003 with a BSc (Hons) in Mathematics, an MSc in medical statistics from Lancaster University in 2005 and a PhD in outcome reporting bias in meta-analysis from the University of Liverpool in 2010. She worked as a research associate in the Department of Biostatistics at the University of Liverpool as a trial statistician and also with the Cochrane Cystic Fibrosis and Genetic Disorders Group and The Liverpool Reviews and Implementation Group before joining the EMD in 2015.

Sarah Hodgkinson

Sarah is an Associate Editor supporting the Children and Families Network and Circulation and Breathing Network. She joined the Cochrane Editorial and Methods Department in April 2018. Sarah joins Cochrane from the National Guidelines Centre at the Royal College of Physicians in London where she was a Senior Research Fellow, leading a multidisciplinary team in the production of systematic reviews for NICE guidelines since 2009. She has experience of intervention, diagnostic test accuracy, prognostic and qualitative systematic reviews, and her work has included a wide range of topic areas such as venous thromboembolic disease, head injury, physical health in prisons, and care of dying adults. Sarah holds a PhD in cardiovascular physiology from King's College, London.

Nuala Livingstone

Nuala is an Associate Editor supporting the Mental Health and Neuroscience Network, and the Musculoskeletal, Oral, Skin and Sensory Network. She joined the Cochrane Editorial and Methods Department in London in April 2015. After graduating from Queen’s University Belfast in 2010 with a PhD in Psychology, Nuala worked as a Research Fellow in the School of Sociology, Social Policy and Social Work at Queen's University Belfast, focusing primarily on authoring and editing systematic reviews. During this time, she assisted in several Cochrane and National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Heath Technology Assessment Reviews on topics including autism, child mental Health, child maltreatment, restorative justice, and Down’s Syndrome. Nuala has experience of intervention reviews, diagnostic test accuracy reviews, and network meta-analyses.

Workshop 12:  Knowledge Translation in Cochrane: what we are doing and how we are becoming a KT-centred organization

Founders Room


Cochrane defines Knowledge Translation (KT) as the process of supporting the use of health evidence from our high quality, trusted Cochrane systematic reviews by those who need it to make health decisions.

This session will provide a practical insight into the progress of Cochrane's Knowledge Translation Strategy during its second year of implementation across the organization. We will look at how Cochrane Groups are responding to the needs of their stakeholders and how they engage and build relationships with those who need and use Cochrane evidence.

Learning Objectives 

Participants will:

  • share learning resources and training products to improve capacity to deliver our Knowledge Translation work
  • hear from UK Cochrane Groups about the challenges faced and successes achieved when undertaking Knowledge Translation activities
  • learn from each other, as peers with a common objective in promoting Cochrane's mission
  • gain knowledge of the current breadth of Knowledge Translation activities, including the latest progress on becoming a KT-centred organization, the implementation of the KT strategy; the Cochrane Working Groups; the work plans across the six key themes and priorities for 2019 in meeting the needs of our specific KT audiences.   

Group discussion:

  • What are the opportunities and constraints to Cochrane’s KT work?
  • How do we develop a great capacity internally for KT?
  • How does our KT work align with the strategic priorities of Cochrane’s Review Group Networks in 2019 and beyond?
  • How do we monitor and evaluate the range of our KT activities, and measure success

This workshop is suitable for everyone


Jo Anthony, Katie Abbotts and Sabrina Khamissa

Jo Anthony

Jo is the Head of Knowledge Translation, in Cochrane.  Jo has more than 20 years' experience in print and broadcast journalism and as a senior executive and communications specialist. She joined Cochrane in 2014 as Media and Communications Officer, and during the last five years has worked with Cochrane groups, authors and editorial teams to increase the coverage, reach, accessibility and impact of Cochrane's evidence around the world. As Head of Knowledge Translation (KT) in Cochrane, she leads the coordination, facilitation and support for the organizational implementation of the KT Strategy which seeks to maximize the dissemination, use and impact of Cochrane evidence. Her interests include developing and implementing knowledge translation and communications strategies that engage, inform and interest global and diverse audiences. Jo's academic qualifications include a BA (Hons) and a Postgraduate Diploma in Broadcast Journalism, (NCTBJ) from City University, London. She has a proven track record of leadership roles within global organizations, including the BBC, commercial media, and digital content production companies managing international multi-disciplinary teams.

Katie Abbotts

Katie is a communications professional with over twenty years of experience working for small and large organizations helping them refine how they engage with their audiences. Katie works with  Cochrane globally and Cochrane UK and helping both organizations achieve their knowledge translation goals.