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What is e-Learning?

e-Learning refers to any education supported by the use of information and communication technology. On these pages you will find a variety of NPC resources designed to cater for your preferred e-learning style.

How to use these resources:

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What will these resources help me to do?
Working through these resources will help you to critically review the evidence-base for interventions and discuss the implications for the care of patients. In particular, after working through the resources on this floor, you should be able to:
- Discuss the evidence-base around the clinical management of a particular therapeutic topic
- Discuss the content and implications of guidelines and summaries of evidence of a particular therapeutic topic
- Formulate an evidence-based plan for the management of patients
- Apply this plan to the care of individuals and populations using the criteria of effectiveness, safety, cost and patient factors
- Discuss relevant prescribing trends both locally and nationally.

Links to all the resources available for a particular therapeutic topic are listed in the menu on the left.

Suggested ways to use the resources
The resources are designed to be used either independently of each other, or in combination. You may wish to use all, some or only one of them. Which you use depends as much on your preferred learning style as anything else. Here are some suggestions:

If you are new to the topic or are not very familiar with it, try listening to the recorded less than 60 minutes
e-learning event
. The recorded e-Learning events are split into short sections, and can be navigated using the slide index on the left hand side of the screen. The slides can also be enlarged so that you can read them more easily by clicking on the full screen icon at the bottom right of the slide. Each section of the e-learning event has been designed to stand alone so you don’t have to listen to them all at once. To help remind you what has been covered already, the key points that have been covered previously are repeated at the start of subsequent sections.

To check that your knowledge and understanding is in line with the current evidence-base, completing a quiz or a case study might be helpful. For example, having a go at the quiz might help you identify your learning needs fairly quickly. It can also be useful to try it again after using some of the other resources, such as the recorded e-learning event, to see whether your learning needs have been met fully.

Case studies are fictional but representative ‘real world’ scenarios where you can check and apply your understanding and compare your answers with fully referenced suggested model answers. This option is likely to be particularly of interest to people who like learning in context.

If you want to explain the key messages, or discuss key issues with colleagues, the key slides and notes may be useful: you can download the slides and use them as a PowerPoint presentation, either by projecting them electronically or by printing them off and using them in paper form, rather like a pharmaceutical company representative’s detail aid. Before using key slides, it is important to read the accompanying notes pages carefully and have a good understanding of the content and educational messages. The key slides are derived from the slides in the less than 60 minute e-learning event, so listening to the recording may well be helpful.

The data-focused commentary compares recent prescribing and other data with the evidence-base and highlights any areas where the evidence may not have been implemented. There are also questions for reflection which may be useful when reflecting on practice with colleagues.

The patient decision aids on this website have been developed to help support difficult decisions in which patients need to consider benefits versus risks. They are intended to be used in consultations to encourage better informed, patient-focused decision-making. More information and background on patient decision aids is available in the evidence-informed decision-making section of the NPC website.

How long will each resource take me to complete?
This will of course vary from person to person, but we expect that a case study or quiz will take about 20 minutes to complete. Some cases and quizzes are longer or shorter than average, depending on the topic. The recorded workshops last about 60 minutes in total (although some are shorter and one or two are longer). However, all workshops are broken down into shorter subsections, no longer than about 20–25 minutes and usually much shorter.

Other NPC resources you may find useful
For the most up to date information please check whether any MeReC Rapid Reviews have been published since these materials were updated. You may also find it useful to see what NPC publications have been written on this topic. There are links to related Rapid Reviews and publications on this page. We have also provided links to external resources e.g. NICE guidance, which might be helpful. For more information on managing therapeutic information overload see the evidence-informed decision-making section of the NPC website.

How are NPC materials produced?
NPC materials are produced by NPC staff and others working for NPC on a commissioned basis. All the content is written by experienced health professionals and is subject to a rigorous quality assurance process. The NPC has a track record of producing high-quality written materials such as the MeReC publications and materials for its face-to-face training programme.

Please give us feedback
These e-learning resources will be reviewed and updated at regular intervals to ensure that they are still relevant, and reflect current practice in the NHS. If you have used any of these resources, and have comments or suggestions either about the content, or ideas for how we might improve and build on them, please use our feedback form.


An interactive way to check your understanding of the key points and identify your learning needs. Fully referenced answers are provided.

Less than 60 minute e-learning events

Hot-synch your brain by watching and listening to a short workshop on a key topic, all in less than 60 minutes.

Case studies

Fictional but representative ‘real world’ scenarios where you can check and apply your understanding of the topic. You can compare your answers with our fully referenced suggested model answers.

Key slides

These slides and notes help you explain key messages and discuss important therapeutic issues with colleagues.