The CASP checklists were developed as a pedagogic teaching tool, for use within our workshop settings. They would be used to show the process of how to critically appraise and the sorts of questions people should be aware about – therefore increasing their critical thinking. They are usually used within small and large group work, with discussion. therefore, they were never formally validated. In a workshop setting we would usually point out that the 1st 2/3 questions are ‘screening’ questions, and if the answer is no to those, then generally the paper is not worth looking at.

The checklists were created in 1993 in response to the need for developing skills in health care staff to meet the challenge of Evidence Based Medicine. The workshop format was developed by trial and error with willing guinea pigs! The core CASP checklists (randomised controlled trial & systematic review) were based on JAMA ‘Users’ guides to the medical literature 1994 (adapted from Guyatt GH, Sackett DL, and Cook DJ), and piloted with health care practitioners.

For each new checklist (e.g qualitative) a group of experts were assembled to develop and pilot the checklist and the workshop format with which it would be used. These checklists were not officially validated as such, because they were designed to be used as teaching aids. We have compiled a bibliography which is available to download from our website –