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About the Checklist

This is a webpage for the GIN-McMaster Guideline Development Checklist, which contains a comprehensive list of topics and items outlining the practical steps to consider for developing guidelines. The Guideline Development Checklist project is a partnership between the Guidelines International Network (GIN) and McMaster University. The checklist is intended for use by guideline developers to plan and track the process of guideline development and to help ensure that no key steps are missed. Users of the checklist should become familiar with the topics and the items before applying them.

What the Checklist is and what it isn't:

The checklist is designed to serve as a publicly available and interactive resource, with links to learning tools and training materials, for those interested in beginning, enhancing or evaluating their guideline development process. Considering items on this checklist is intended to support the development and implementation of trustworthy guidelines.

The purpose of the checklist is not to replace guideline credibility assessment tools like AGREE and other tools that may be a result of standards put forth by the Guidelines International Network or Institute of Medicine (IOM). Following steps outlined in the checklist will, however, ensure that key items are covered and increase the likelihood of the guideline achieving higher scores when evaluated with credibility assessment tools.

See our publication in the Canadian Medical Association Journal for a detailed explanation of the guideline checklist and its development.

Using the Checklist

There are two versions of the checklist for guideline developers to use:

The checklist is available in an online version that users can review to learn about the topics and items for guideline development. This version includes links to learning tools, articles and guides to learn about the items in the checklist, as well as links to resources and tools for implementing the items. It also includes links for users to provide feedback about the items and to suggest any new important items for the checklist, as well as additional learning tools and resources.

A downloadable PDF version of the checklist is for use during the development of a guideline. It includes checkboxes to keep track of steps that have been completed and space for users to keep notes. It is set up as an electronic form that can be saved and updated as users progress through the guideline development process.

Also available is a glossary of terms and acronyms appearing throughout the checklist.

Please also view the two videos below to learn about the features of each version of the checklist.