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O'Shea, O'Connell, Gallagher in press RCT.pdf (832.25 kB)

Randomised controlled trials in WOHP interventions: a review and guidelines for use

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posted on 2023-01-17, 11:43 authored by DEIRDRE O'SHEADEIRDRE O'SHEA, Brenda H. O'Connell, STEPHEN GALLAGHERSTEPHEN GALLAGHER
Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) have long been considered a gold standard for intervention design and the most rigorous method for understanding causal mechanisms. However, their implementation in work and organisational health psychology (WOHP) can be challenging. We review the use of RCTs in WOHP interventions and demonstrate that their adoption has been relatively scarce in comparison to areas such as health psychology and medical sciences. For WOHP researchers to be able to compare the effectiveness of their work-specific health interventions with other interventions in health and medicine, it is important that the design methodology, rigor, and reporting are comparable. Thus, there is a need for a clearer road map and guidance for WOHP researchers, to encourage greater use of RCTs in WOHP intervention research. In the paper, we provide an overview of RCTs, and review past research that has utilised an RCT design when evaluating WOHP interventions. We develop an adapted RCT checklist for use in WOHP settings, which takes specific organisational issues into account. Thus, our paper provides for future researchers a clearer road map for the design and reporting of WOHP RCT studies.


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This is the author's version of the following article:Randomized controlled trials in WOHP interventions: a review and guideliens for use The definitive version is available at



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  • Psychology
  • Work and Employment Studies

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