Welcome to the Scottish Intercollegiate Research Training Network
Developing clinical research training for Scotland
SIRTN news...
27 October 2003
News on SIRTN (NES Phase) Completion

Dear Colleagues,

This week sees the completion of the all important first phase of SIRTN. I am pleased to report good progress has been made in acheiving key outputs; an audit of available resources, the learning needs analysis and the development of a training pathway and key initial electronic Modules for this.

We hope to be able to bring more news about a possible project extension later this year and look forward to releasing the full series of Modules that we have identified as being recommended for this pathway.

Can I once again take this opportunity to thank all those who have inputted on this important project
to help us get this far,

Many thanks and very best regards,

Dominic MacLeod

14 October 2003
News on Completion of SIRTN Project Phase 1

Last months meeting at the Royal College of Physicians was a great success in a number of respects in advancing plans for e-learning development in Research Methods and Evidence-based Practice.

A presentation of all the latest findings from the audit of existing resources and the learning needs analysis was made to representatives of 4 Royal Colleges. In addition a demonstration module entitled 'Searching for Information' was shown and methods for taking the initiative forward were discussed.

This month sees the end of the first NHS Education for Scotland sponsored phase of the project. Plans are in hand to extend the project over a longer term to develop a fully integrated training programme. This hopefully will see the development of a full range of Modules with a comprehensive set of options for training in addition. These Modules will be developed in repsonse to your kind responses on the questionnaires that you took time to fill in and complete and return to us.

The 10 main topics it is felt are useful to build up into Modules based on your responses are;

Literature searching
Critical Appraisal
Research Question Design
Research Protocol Design
Project Management
Development of an Application for Grant Funding
Development of a Research Ethics Submission
Presentation Skills

Thanks once again to all who helped with the learning needs analysis and we look forward to bringing you further news on this important initiative soon,

Best regards,

Dominic MacLeod MD

10 September 2003
Shaping the Future

A key meeting takes place today at the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh to discuss SIRTN.

Experts on computer assisted learning will be meeting to draw up plans for the future.

More news will follow shortly on this exciting event,

Best regards,

Dominic MacLeod

29 August 2003
Course advertisement

The Education Programme at the Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Facility in Edinburgh are offering a course 'Introduction to Medical Statistics' on Thursday 25th September.

Organised by Dr J.Ilsley, all those interested to apply are asked to do so by Wednesday 3rd September, and details can be accessed via the web-site for this programme;


The Course costs 150 and covers a range of statistical concepts involved in the design and analysis of research projects.

With best regards,

Dominic MacLeod

15 August 2003
Forward planning for SIRTN Project

Together with the demonstration product being built for this project, progress is now being made on deciding which existing Scottish products delivering evidence-based practice training and research methods training might be integrated into the project.

A meeting will take place soon at the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh (10/09/03) to review progress on the project and discuss further developments. I very much hope to be able to report on this shortly.

With best regards and thanks to all those who returned questionnaires for the project,

Dominic MacLeod MD

30 July 2003
News on Module development

The SIRTN Curriculum Committee have begun their work to develop a demonstration project in e-learning to be presented to the Royal Colleges in Scotland. The theme will be 'Appraising the Evidence' and the product is being built using MS FrontPage with Powerpoint demonstration support.

There will be plenty of opportunity for interested trainees to pilot this material so watch this space for further information.

With the learning needs analysis now nearly complete can I once again remind anyone who has an uncompleted questionnaire for SIRTN to please send it back to us to get the very best research picture we can of your learning needs for the future.

Thank you very much,

Dominic MacLeod
Fellow, Scottish Intercollegiate Research Training Network.

24 June 2003
Progress on Educational Product development

Work is now in progress to assemble electronic resources designed to work with the existing Cyber Medical College facilities for evidence-based medicine and research training. A number of additional modules are planned, including; Working with SIGN guidelines, Searching for Information,
Critical Appraisal and Audit and Research Awareness
development Modules.

Collaboration is also underway with the Faculty of Medical Informatics to identify learning needs amongst the likely end-users of this product, working provisionally with a group of nurse specialists in the Lanarkshire Primary Care Trust region.

I look forward to bringing you further information on this as it is assembled,

Best regards

Dominic MacLeod

29 May 2003
Update on Course Development work

At the present time SIRTN are developing the basic Curriculum for the Course to be launched in October 2003. It is anticipated that this will take into account the fact that a majority of users will seek skills in evidence-based practice and highly time-effective information searching. Together with this is likely to be a need for developing research awareness, but not everyone will want to progress to develop more hands on style research skills. Therefore a number of modular options will be presented.

I look forward to updating you further on this exciting educational development in due Course,

With best regards on behalf of the SIRTN group,

Dominic MacLeod

07 May 2003
Curriculum Development work

Good progress is being made on shaping the Curriculum for the new SIRTN course on research methods. We are very hopeful that this will cover not only basic research methods at an introductory level, but also a comprehensive section on evidence-based practice and the competencies required to sustain and develop it, and a small section on audit.

We are very keen to hear your ideas on this Course and its content which can be sent via the feedback section on this portal.

Thanks for your attention,

Dr Dominic MacLeod MD
Senior Research Fellow, SIRTN Project

08 April 2003
The SIRTN project is now focussing more closely on the shaping of the final form of the Course in terms of modular content and mode of delivery. A collaborative meeting has been held with the Royal College of General Practitioner CD-ROM development group that have already built a pilot CAL CD-ROM with NHS Education for Scotland. Plans are now in progress for further development of this product as part of a wider scale CAL based Course for Scotland.

As part of this work we shall soon be conducting telephone interviews to those of you who very kindly completed the Questionnaire survey. This will be to help you have a say in how this course looks.

We look forward to updating you on the feedback from this process shortly,

With kind regards

Dominic MacLeod MD
Senior Research Fellow SIRTN project,
Consultant Respiratory Physician, Fife Acute Hospitals NHS Trust

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