A network for students interested in evidence-based health care

Bias: the biggest enemy

Posted on 21st May 2013 by

Learning Resources
cartoon about bias

Name of resource:

QMP – Medical Statistics Online Tutorial: Bias – the biggest enemy [1]

What does it cover?

The tutorial teaches about one of the biggest enemies of strong evidence in clinical research – bias, as well as measurements and outcomes in the clinical trial. It starts with a flowchart describing all the steps needed to design a clinical trial. Each step is explained in a more detailed manner highlighting the key aspects and providing the reader with a few short quizzes. Along the way the readers are introduced to six possible opportunities for bias: bias of subjects and population source, confounding, bias during the intervention, bias in the measurement of outcomes, compliance and attrition, and external validity assessing. The tutorial also provides the reader with possible “anti-biases” to help minimize their effects on the results.

Who is it aimed at?

This tutorial was created by the University of South Wales in Australia and is meant to teach young medical students and newly graduated doctors.

How long will it take to finish?

Depending on your level of interest and knowledge about evidence-based medicine, it could take you from 1 to 2 hours to complete.

My opinions:

I found this tutorial to be very helpful, since it explains some very basic yet extremely important points about clinical research in a very simple manner. I’d recommend it to everyone looking for simple, clear and interactive lessons with a few exercises. I had a pleasant opportunity to revise some of the material I already know and re-organize my notes as well as learn a lot of new information.



[1] Rachel Thompson, Mike Bennett, Ed Loughman. QMP Medical Statistics Tutorial: Bias – the biggest enemy [Internet]. University of New South Wales, Faculty of Medicine; 2008 [updated 15 March 2013; cited 21 May 2013]. Available from: http://web.med.unsw.edu.au/QMP/QMPTut5_2012/Tut5_Intro.htm


Donatas Zailskas

Hey! I'm from Lithuania, I'm a 6th year medical student in the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, head of the Neurology group in our Student Scientific Society. I'm hopefully starting a Neurology residency in September, very interested in Neuroscience and extremely keen on improving the current state of healthcare and student education in my country. Evidence-based medicine, critical thinking are extremely important, so I feel a strong need to strengthen this type of education. View more posts from Donatas

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No Comments on Bias: the biggest enemy

  • Helen Shaw

    This course says it is ‘unavailable to guests’ and appears to be unavailable to anyone not a formal student or staff member at the university.

    29th February 2024 at 2:05 pm
    Reply to Helen
    • Emma Carter

      Thank you for letting us know, Helen. That is such a shame that this is now a closed resource.

      29th February 2024 at 3:53 pm
      Reply to Emma

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