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Join the Centre for Statistics in Medicine's annual RCT Course, which covers everything you need to know about the design, conduct, analysis, interpretation and reporting of randomised controlled trials.



Now in its 16th year, this course provides a thorough grounding in the principles and practice of randomised controlled trials (RCTs) for evaluating healthcare interventions. You will learn from an interdisciplinary faculty of clinicians, statisticians, and trial managers, all with a wealth of RCT experience. The course uses a problem-based learning approach, including lectures and small-group practical sessions, and grounds all learning in practical experience and examples from the literature.


  • Clarify the fundamental principles and practice of RCTs
  • Demonstrate the optimal methodology to use in RCTs
  • Examine the critical issues involved in planning, conducting and completing a successful trial
  • Provide a basic understanding of the statistics used to plan and analyse RCTs
  • Teach critical appraisal skills and practice appraising RCT papers


Course faculty will include:

  • Dr Vicki Barber, Hub Manager, Oxford Clinical Trials Research Unit, University of Oxford
  • Prof David Beard, Professor of Musculoskeletal Sciences, Nuffield Department of Orthopaedics, Rheumatology and Musculoskeletal Sciences, University of Oxford
  • Prof Jane Blazeby, Professor of Surgery at the University of Bristol and Honorary Consultant Surgeon at University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust
  • Prof Mike Clarke, Director, MRC All-Ireland Trials Methodology Research Hub, Queen’s University Belfast
  • Associate Prof Jonathan Cook, University Lecturer, Nuffield Department of Orthopaedics, Rheumatology and Musculoskeletal Sciences and Centre for Statistics in Medicine, University of Oxford.
  • Prof Richard Emsley, Professor of Medical Statistics and Trials Methodology at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology, and Neuroscience at King's College London.
  • Prof Ed Juszczak, Director, National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit Clinical Trials Unit, University of Oxford.


If you are planning or actively involved in trials, or are interested in furthering your knowledge of trial methodology, this course is for you. It is ideal for those early in their career or those looking for a refresher course, as it provides an overview of all elements of an RCT. We invite applications from clinical and non-clinical researchers and other professionals allied to medicine.



A typical day runs from 9am to 5:30pm, with a banquet on the evening of Thursday 20 September and an early finish at 2pm on Friday 21 September after lunch.

The course will be held at Merton College, a historic college located in Oxford city centre.


£1450, discounted to £1300 when payment is made before 1 May 2018.

Fees include daily lunch and refreshments, a course dinner (Thursday evening), and a comprehensive delegate’s pack including all course materials.


Course registration is now open. Places are limited, and registration will close on 1 September 2018 or when the course is full, whichever is sooner. Please contact Jacqueline Wright on for more information and to request an application form.


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Forthcoming events

CANCELLED: UK EQUATOR Centre Publication School: July 2020

Thursday, 16 July 2020 to Friday, 17 July 2020, 9am - 5pm @ Botnar Research Centre, University of Oxford

The secrets of success in writing, publishing, and disseminating research articles

OCTRU New Starter Training *ONLINE*

Tuesday, 04 August 2020, 10am to 11.30am @ Botnar Research Centre, Room G51

Please note this session will be run online over Microsoft Teams - further details will be sent directly to attendees.

OCTRU New Starter Training

Tuesday, 01 September 2020, 10am to 11.30am @ Botnar Research Centre, Room G51

OCTRU Trials Expertise Session: Amendments

Thursday, 10 September 2020, 10am to 11am @ Botnar Research Centre, Room G54

OCTRU Extended Training Bite (STATS): Randomisation and Blinding

Wednesday, 16 September 2020, 10am to 11.30am @ Botnar Research Centre, Room G54

POSTPONED - OCTRU Workshop (QA): Serious Breaches

Thursday, 17 September 2020, 9.30am to 1pm @ Botnar Research Centre, Room G54/38

Please note this session has been postponed until further notice.