Have you ever wondered if eating cheese really does give you nightmares? Does wearing your coat inside the house reduce its ability to keep you warm outside? Does taking a walk at lunchtime make us more productive in the afternoon? Or perhaps you have a question of your own.
If so, your time has come because you too can become a scientist this summer. The People’s Trial is an online project that gives you the chance to be a scientist and together with researchers create a fun, online randomised trial from the comfort of your own home. This initiative will facilitate the creation of a randomised trial, created for the public by the public.
So what is a randomised trial and why is it important? Randomised trials have been set out in a very structured and planned way to make fair comparisons between treatments, to find out which is best. It is a type of research study that compares groups of people receiving different interventions and looks at which of these improves health outcomes the most.
An intervention is anything that aims to make a change to someone’s health. Providing a counselling service, giving a drug, or giving people information and training are all described as interventions. It could also be eating cheese, wearing your coat or taking a walk at lunchtime. The decision about which group a person joins in a randomised trial is random, which means that a person is put into one of the intervention groups by chance.
Read the article in full on www.rte.ie