Cochrane Canada webinars: building capacity around systematic reviews

Abstract text
Background
The Canadian Cochrane Centre is strengthening health research systems through capacity building using virtual training tools, in partnership with the Pan American Health Organization, Regional Office of the World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO).

Objectives
• To promote the use of Cochrane Reviews, tools and resources in health care and health policy to improve health
• To inspire and motivate participants to become Cochrane Collaboration contributors
• To teach participants the methods used to conduct Cochrane Reviews
• To empower participants to make evidence-based decisions about health and health care
• To promote the use of knowledge translation strategies
• To provide a unique training opportunity to a wide audience

Methods
Webinars offer tools to engage participants and to enhance learning/retention. For example, functions such as application sharing and polls allow participants to join hands-on demonstrations. Moreover, webinars allow for real-time debates and knowledge exchange. They can be recorded for continuing education purposes and reference. Finally, webinars are evaluated using surveys.

Results
Feedback from participants suggests that webinars may complement and/or replace other forms of learning (e.g. face-to-face workshops). Evaluations also suggest that these virtual educational platforms are effective.
Continuous evaluation, periodicity, and consistency have resulted in a comprehensive, growing collection of sessions addressing different needs, breadths, and depth in topics. Our webinars successfully engage participants from varied geographic and professional settings and with different levels of expertise.

Conclusions
The webinars represent a creative approach towards capacity building with stakeholders. Webinar strategies and methods from the Canadian experience have implications for broader outreach within The Cochrane Collaboration internationally.
Authors
Ueffing E1, Vilis E1, Stevens A2, Cuervo LG3
1 Canadian Cochrane Centre, Canada
2 Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, Canada
3 Pan American Health Organization (PAHO/WHO), USA
Presenting author and contact person
Presenting author: 
Erin Ueffing
Contact person Affiliation Country
Erin Ueffing (Contact this person) Canadian Cochrane Centre Canada
Date and Location
Session: 
Oral session C17O2
Date: 
Wednesday 3 October 2012 - 11:20 - 11:40
Location: