The overall aim of training for public reviewers is to prepare members of the public to carry out reviews from their own perspective – not to try to provide a scientific review. Training might involve:
Training can be offered as an induction or ‘briefing’ session. It may cover:
If you are offering training to a group of potential public reviewers, ideally this training should be offered face-to-face. This will enable people to meet others, to share their learning and to give and receive support from peers.
Some organisations have developed written or web-based guidance targeted specifically at public reviewers. See those developed by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Central Commissioning Facility. If using this approach, following up with a phone conversation to check people have understood the guidance and whether they have any questions is important. If you are training a group of new public reviewers you could offer a teleconference so that people can discuss the guidance and think together about how they might carry out a review.