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Seminar review: Ophthalmic study design and approaches to statistical analysis

16 February 2016

This new seminar from the College addresses a large unmet need for improving the understanding and quality of knowledge of statistics and trials within ophthalmology, not only for researchers undertaking eye studies but also for clinicians looking to appraise the evidence for best patient care.

The format was eight talks on topics ranging from research study design to critical appraisal and systematic reviews, including an excellent practical talk of 10 top tips in statistical methods in ophthalmology. The presenters were predominantly from the newly formed Ophthalmic Statistics Group – a group of medical statisticians with a particular interest in ophthalmic research – and therefore the talks were clinically relevant and interesting, which is not always true of statistics education!  The content of the talks was appropriately wide-ranging and comprehensible, focussing on advice and broad concepts, rather than statistical formulae.

I hope this is a precedent for future courses on ophthalmic studies and research, particularly given the current climate within science of seeking to improve the rigor and transparency of journal published research.

James Cameron, Hon. Consultant Ophthalmologist, University of Edinburgh
9 February 2016