Introduction to meta-analysis 1: Basic ideas for novices

Topic category Statistical methods and meta-analysis
Date and Location
Monday 1 October 2012 - 13:30 - 15:00
Methods Group
Methods Group: 
Statistical Methods Group
Contact persons and facilitators
Contact person Affiliation Country
Joseph Beyene (Contact this person) Faculty of Health Sciences, McMaster University Canada
Facilitator Affiliation Country
Joseph Beyene Faculty of Health Sciences, McMaster University Canada
Target audience
Target audience: 
Review authors
Is your workshop restricted to a specific audience or open to all Colloquium participants?: 
Level of knowledge required: 
Type of workshop
Type of workshop: 
Abstract text
The Cochrane Statistical Methods Group has developed a series of workshops addressing statistical guidelines as formulated in the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions. This workshop will cover the basic ideas of meta-analysis at an accessible level.

Topics to be covered include:
• What is a meta-analysis?
• What is a ‘forest plot’?
• What are ‘odds ratios’, ‘risk ratios’ and ‘risk differences’?
• What is heterogeneity?
• What do ‘fixed-effect’ and ‘random-effects’ mean?

The emphasis of the workshop will be on obtaining a broad understanding of the differences between the various methods available in RevMan, with advice on which might be used when, and why, and what the results mean.