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Plain language summaries: the most valuable part of a Cochrane review

Topic category Knowledge translation and communicating evidence
Date and Location
Date: 
Thursday 20 October 2011 - 14:00 - 15:30
Location: 
Methods Group
Methods Group: 
None
Contact person
Contact person: 
Tamara Rader (Contact this person)
Facilitators
First nameLast nameAffiliation and Country
First name: 
Tamara
Last name: 
Rader
Affiliation and Country: 
Cochrane Musculoskeletal Group, Canada
Other contributors
First nameLast nameAffiliation and Country
First name: 
Jordi
Last name: 
Pardo
Affiliation and Country: 
Campbell and Cochrane Equity Methods Group, Canada
First name: 
David
Last name: 
Tovey
Affiliation and Country: 
Cochrane Editorial Unit, UK
First name: 
Elizabeth
Last name: 
Ghogomu
Affiliation and Country: 
Cochrane Musculoskeletal Group, Canada
Target audience
Target audience: 
Co-Editors, Managing Editors, Centre Staff, Authors, Consumers, Consumer advocates, Knowledge Brokers, Communication Specialists
Is your workshop restricted to a specific audience or open to all Colloquium participants?: 
Open
Level of knowledge required: 
Intermediate
Type of workshop
Type of workshop: 
Discussion
Abstract text
Abstract: 
Objectives:
to discuss approaches to the creation of the plain language summary.

Description:
The plain language summary is arguably the most important part of the Cochrane review. It is written in a style that the general public can understand and it is freely available and often reproduced in the press, and in newsletters and websites. It has the potential to reach the widest range of people. The Cochrane Musculokeletal Group has been developing plain language summaries based on the ‘Summary of findings’ (SoF) tables from each Cochrane review. This method is true to the results of the review, is consistent across reviews, and helps ensure that different audiences will read the same result, whether they read the plain language summary, the abstract, or the whole review. This workshop provides a forum for discussion about the about pros and cons of this approach and alternatives.
Through group discussion and report back, participants will discuss issues related to the creation of plain language summaries. Participants will leave the workshop with a better understanding of the rationale behind using the summary of findings table to create the plain language summary, and practical guidance for implementing this consistent and high quality approach.