This guide has been developed to support NT Health staff who would like to start a Journal Club.
What is a Journal Club?
Traditionally a journal club is a group of individuals who meet regularly to discuss recent articles in the medical and health literature.
There are many approaches to the settings and conduct of journal clubs, but they have become increasingly widespread as a component of clinical rotations for students in the health care professions. The leader of the group will give guidelines for the paper being reviewed (article publication date, relevance to group, etc.) and for what is expected of the presenter (length of presentation, timeframe for distributing copies, etc.) and the attendees (read article beforehand, participate in discussion, etc.).
What are the advantages of being in a journal club?
The primary benefits of participating in a journal club relate to the goals of such groups—improved education and improving clinical practice.
Participants can improve their reading habits and gain practice in critiquing and appraising research; they can polish their presentation and communication skills; they can network and improve dialogue with other colleagues and professionals; and they can see how the best research can improve evidence-based and quality care.
For experienced professionals the benefits are similar, they can keep abreast of new knowledge; practice the skills of interpreting research data; network and improve interpersonal relationships with peers and other specialists; and they can encourage the translation of research into practice to improve outcomes.