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Randomized Controlled Trial

A Randomized Controlled Trial or (RCT) design randomly assigns participants into an experimental group or a control group. As the study is conducted, the only expected difference between the control and experimental groups in a randomized controlled trial (RCT) is the outcome variable being studied. The participants are divided by chance into separate groups that compare different treatments. Using chance to divide people into groups means the groups will be similar and that the effects of the treatments they receive can be compared more fairly. During the trial, which treatment is best is not known .


  • Blind/mask is easier than from observational studies
  • Randomization washes out any population bias
  • Participating individuals of population are clearly identified
  • Results can be analyzed with known statistical tools


  • Does not reveal causation
  • Expensive, as far as, time and money
  • Loss to follow-up attributed to treatment
  • Volunteer biases the population that participates may not be representing the whole

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