- Access the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions
- About the Handbook
- Methodological Expectations for Cochrane Intervention Reviews (MECIR)
- Glossary of Cochrane terms
- Contact the Editors
- How to cite the Handbook
- Permission to re-use material from the Handbook
- Previous versions
The Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions is the official guide that describes in detail the process of preparing and maintaining Cochrane systematic reviews on the effects of healthcare interventions. All authors should consult the Handbook for guidance on the methods used in Cochrane systematic reviews. The Handbook includes guidance on the standard methods applicable to every review (planning a review, searching and selecting studies, data collection, risk of bias assessment, statistical analysis, GRADE and interpreting results), as well as more specialised topics (non-randomized studies, adverse effects, complex interventions, equity, economics, patient-reported outcomes, individual patient data, prospective meta-analysis, and qualitative research). The list of all author contributors of the Handbook is available here.
Key aspects of Handbook guidance are collated as the Methodological Expectations for Cochrane Intervention Reviews (MECIR). These provide core standards that are generally expected of Cochrane reviews. Each MECIR item includes a link to a relevant Handbook chapter.
Our Glossary includes definitions of methodological and organisational terms as used by Cochrane.
For further information and for any Handbook enquiries please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Handbook editorial team includes: Julian Higgins and James Thomas (Senior Scientific Editors); Jacqueline Chandler, Miranda Cumpston, Tianjing Li, Matthew Page and Vivian Welch (Associate Scientific Editors); Ella Flemyng (Managing Editor); and Laura Mellor (Editorial Assistant).
To cite the full Handbook online, please use:
Higgins JPT, Thomas J, Chandler J, Cumpston M, Li T, Page MJ, Welch VA (editors). Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions version 6.1 (updated September 2020). Cochrane, 2020. Available from www.training.cochrane.org/handbook.
To cite the print edition of the Handbook, please use:
Higgins JPT, Thomas J, Chandler J, Cumpston M, Li T, Page MJ, Welch VA (editors). Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions. 2nd Edition. Chichester (UK): John Wiley & Sons, 2019.
Details of how to cite individual chapters in either of these versions are available in each chapter.
Academic or other non-commercial re-use of Handbook material
Requests for permission to re-use material from the Handbook only for academic purposes should be directed to Julian Higgins or James Thomas, the Senior Editors, via email@example.com. Please include specific details of what material you wish to re-use, and how. If approved, these will be granted free of charge on condition that the source is acknowledged.
Commercial re-use of Handbook material
Commercial re-use includes any use of the Handbook that will be used in a product for which there is a monetary fee, and/or where it is associated in any way with any product or service. For all enquiries related to the commercial re-use of Handbook material please contact Tony Aburrow, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Archived copies of the following previous versions of the Handbook are available:
• Version 6.0: July 2019 [browsable]
• Version 5.2: June 2017 [PDF]
• Version 5.1: March 2011 [browsable]
• Version 5.0.2: September 2009 [browsable]
• Version 5.0.0: February 2008 [browsable]
• Version 4.2.6: September 2006 [PDF] 2.8MB