Methods: Mind the Gap

Webinar Series

When is the Stepped Wedge Study a Good Study Design Choice?

January 21, 2022, 10:00 a.m. ET
Karla Hemming
Karla Hemming, Ph.D.

University of Birmingham, UK

*A recording of this webinar will be available approximately two weeks after the session

About the Webinar

The stepped wedge cluster randomized trial (SW-CRT) involves the sequential transition of clusters (such as hospitals, public health units, or communities) from control to intervention conditions in a randomized order. The use of the SW-CRT is growing rapidly. Yet the SW-CRT is at greater risks of bias compared with the conventional parallel cluster randomized trial. For this reason, the Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) extension for SW-CRTs requires that investigators provide a clear justification for the choice of study design. This is particularly problematic for studies randomizing a small number of heterogeneous clusters. In this presentation, Dr. Karla Hemming will outline the potential conditions under which an SW-CRT might be an appropriate choice.

About Karla Hemming

Dr. Karla Hemming is a Professor of Biostatistics at the Institute of Applied Health Research, University of Birmingham, UK. Dr. Hemming’s research interests include how to design cluster and stepped wedge trials to maximize their statistical efficiency and minimize their risk of bias; how to model time and treatment effect heterogeneity in longitudinal cluster trials; and the ethical issues surrounding these pragmatic trial designs, such as ethical oversight and consent. Dr. Hemming has recently led the CONSORT extension for the stepped wedge cluster randomized trial.


This webinar will be captioned in real-time. Individuals needing reasonable accommodations should contact Taylor Buffa at MindtheGap@od.nih.gov. Requests should be made at least 5 business days before the event.

Last updated on December 17, 2021