Today Cochrane launches new guidance to help people select images to share alongside Cochrane evidence. You can read more in ‘Choosing images for sharing evidence: new guidance from Cochrane'
Knowledge Translation (KT) in Cochrane is pleased to announce the launch of ‘Choosing images for sharing evidence: a guide’ - a new resource developed by Cochrane UK for people choosing images when sharing Cochrane evidence or news.
Images really matter. They are a vital part of telling the story we want to tell when we share evidence. Images can help our target audience to see that content is relevant to them and to make an immediate connection with the topic. Thoughtful image choice can inform or misinform, attract or repel, and they can help challenge assumptions and change the conversation about health conditions. The images we choose also have the potential to reinforce the message that Cochrane is a trustworthy source of reliable information to support health decisions and to encourage people to engage with the evidence.
An early lesson for Sarah Chapman, who has co-authored the guide along with Selena Ryan-Vig, was her choice of image to accompany evidence on weight loss: a warm, positive image of parents with an overweight teenager, the three sitting together and smiling. A reader told her it was such a contrast to negative images which often accompany stories about obesity and was key to them feeling able to share the article with their son.
So while choosing images is a daily task for many working within Cochrane, particularly those involved with dissemination, we should never underestimate their impact, or the challenges!
To support those selecting images, Cochrane UK has developed ‘Choosing images for sharing evidence: a guide’.
The guidance is based on, and complements, Cochrane’s Checklist and Guidance for disseminating findings from Cochrane intervention reviews. It has been tested with a diverse group of people and is applicable to materials in different languages and ¬¬cultural settings. It features a 15-item checklist and accompanying guidance with many examples of images that may work well, as well as those to avoid, with detailed explanations.
The guide also includes:
- a list of sources of images, many of which are healthcare specific and free to use
- technical advice to ensure that appropriate permission is sought, credit is given, and to make sure that images are high quality rather than fuzzy
- advice on making images accessible to people with impairments, through the addition of alt-text
- worked examples of choosing images which illustrate a range of challenges and considerations where the choice is not straightforward.