Critical appraisal (including CASP)

  • Students in Health and social care (in particular) are required to carry out a structured 'critical appraisal' of research published in articles throughout their programme of study, and, crucially, in the independent research for a dissertation.

    • Start here: Critical appraisal

      (University of Manchester Library, UK) is intelligent and user-friendly. You click through the guide step-by-step with clear explanations on the way. A must for medical and health sciences students.
    • The Critical Appraisal Skills Programme (CASP)

      offers 8 versions of CASP or 'tools' tailored different types of study – check with your tutor if you are uncertain about which to use.

      All versions of CASP group the detailed questions into 3 overarching areas:
      • A Are the results of the trial valid?
      • B What are the results?
      • C Will the results help locally?

      These can make useful headings for structuring your work.

      Be more critical!

      Oxford Brookes, UK 
      On page five of this guide you'll find six critical questions:  What? Who? Why? How? When? Where? These can an be used as a framework for critical appraisal as well as forming the basis for critical thinking about anything.