UNCOVER | Applied Evidence Synthesis

Students: Get Involved

Whether you are interested in contributing to our interdisciplinary work on COVID-19 and its consequences, or you would like to discuss a potential new review, or you are a student seeking supervision for a dissertation or extended project on a relevant topic, we would love to hear from you.

UNCOVER is a community of staff and students at the University of Edinburgh, who work to provide decision-makers with useful and timely answers to real-world questions related to COVID-19 and its consequences. Our focus is on producing rigorous, interdisciplinary public health evidence syntheses, which can be used to inform responses to the pandemic from the local to the international level.

UNCOVER was set up as, and remains, primarily a volunteer-led initiative. When we receive funding , we make it a priority to pay the student teams involved in our reviews, but we cannot guarantee regular paid opportunities with UNCOVER, and participation remains on a voluntary basis. We are committed to the principle that evidence on COVID-19 should be freely and globally available. This means we do not do proprietary research for private organisations - all our evidence reviews are in the public domain, on this website - and we are grateful to the funders who have recognised the value of what we do and have supported us through our first year.

Students and staff at the University of Edinburgh are always welcome to volunteer with UNCOVER. Student volunteers are primarily Masters or PhD students, although undergraduates with relevant experience of conducting systematic reviews may also be eligible. We welcome staff volunteers at all career stages, from early career researchers to experienced academics. Staff who wish to conduct a systematic review on a topic related to COVID-19, and who would like to collaborate with UNCOVER, are very welcome to get in touch.

Evidence synthesis methodologies are well established in biomedical sciences and public health but less well known, or non-existent, in other disciplines.  However, many of the most pressing problems we face as a world seeking to recover from the pandemic cross-disciplinary boundaries and need the expertise and input of people from a range of disciplinary backgrounds and perspectives.  If you don’t come from a public health background but are interested in how you might contribute to tackling these sorts of complex problems and would like to learn more about evidence synthesis approaches, we’d love to hear from you.

Find out more about joining UNCOVER as a student volunteer.

Find out more about joining UNCOVER as a staff volunteer.

Collaborate with UNCOVER on a new review.

In its first two years, UNCOVER has also been able to offer supervision and mentorship to students who are carrying out Masters dissertations (primarily for MPH and MRes students), SSC5 projects (for MBChB students) and BMS Honours research projects. We are always open to discussing new project proposals, and to offering supervision and mentorship whenever we can. We are happy to be approached by course organisers, or directly by individual students with an interest in COVID-19.

Discuss a dissertation or extended project with UNCOVER.

UNCOVER believes strongly in the value of collaboration, across disciplines, across organisations and across borders. We are always happy to work with others on projects related to COVID-19, and to avoid duplicating work already completed or underway. We have enjoyed a productive partnership with researchers from the South African Medical Research Council on our Schools Review, and have recently worked in close collaboration with Public Health Scotland on reviews relating to Student Mental Health and Alcohol and Compliance. In addition, UNCOVER has been an active partner in the COVID-END initiative, with our Co-Lead, Dr Ruth McQuillan, chairing a COVID-END sub-committee on prioritisation and public engagement in response to COVID-19.

We are always pleased to be approached by organisations or individual researchers interested in collaborating on topics of shared interest. We also welcome approaches from policy-makers and decision-makers at all levels, who would like to request an UNCOVER review on a given issue of concern. We will always try to prioritise review topics which respond to an urgent, real-world need for information, and we recognise the pace and pressure of of decision-making during a pandemic, and are open to addressing review topics with very tight timeframes, provided our capacity permits it at the time.

Request a review from UNCOVER.


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