Training for advisory groups often begins with an introduction/induction day, where group members are given information about the research project they are working on, with opportunities to ask questions and discuss their role. This session works best when members can meet face-to-face – even if later meetings take place by phone. It is useful to cover the following topics in an induction session:
An induction session is not just about providing information to group members. It is the start of a conversation between researchers and group members about how they want to work together and how best to make the involvement work. This discussion is likely to be ongoing throughout the project as the work of the group evolves.
At the end of the induction session advisory group members should have a clear understanding of:
It can be useful to provide written handouts to the group that summarise this information that they can then refer to throughout the project.
After this initial induction, any subsequent training of group members is usually integral to their involvement and takes place ‘on-the-job’. For example, if members of the group are involved in developing recruitment processes and / or a participant information sheet, it can be useful to give them some background information about the requirements of ethics committees and standards of good practice.