Question

Should I consider a SMART if my goal is to evaluate the effectiveness of an already developed adaptive intervention?

Answer

No. SMART designs are used to develop an optimized adaptive intervention. If your goal is to evaluate the effectiveness of an already developed adaptive intervention, then you should consider a confirmatory, randomized control trial (RCT). For example, in a standard 2-arm confirmatory RCT you could randomize half the participants to the adaptive intervention and the other half to a suitable control group (e.g., usual care).

Note that SMARTs are not an alternative to confirmatory RCT designs. The two types of trial designs serve different purposes.

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