TAR Course

Welcome to the e-Discovery Team’s training course on TAR (Technology Assisted Review). To help you get through this advanced training we have a number of articles on predictive coding, plus an entry level course on the Law of e-Discovery. You should also know the Sedona Conference Principles and the FRCP on e-discovery.

The term “TAR” as we use it means electronic document review enhanced by active machine learning, a type of specialized Artificial Intelligence. Our method of AI-enhanced document review is called Hybrid Multimodal Predictive Coding 4.0. By the end of the course you will know exactly what this means. You may even grok the above graphic. Reading the below graphic that uses the new Sans Forgetica font should help you to remember.

By the end of the TAR Course you will understand the importance of using all varieties of legal search, for instance: keywords, similarity searches, concept searches and AI driven probable relevance document ranking. That is the Multimodal part. The Hybrid part refers to the partnership with technology, the reliance of the searcher on the advanced algorithmic tools. It is important than Man and Machine work together, but that Man remain in charge of determining relevance. The predictive coding algorithms and software are used to enhance the lawyers, paralegals and law tech’s abilities, not replace them

By course end you will also know what IST means, literally Intelligently Spaced Training, where you keep training until first pass relevance review is completed, a type of Continuous Active Learning, which Grossman and Cormack call CAL.

The course begins with this introductory video by Ralph Losey welcoming you to the TAR Course. Ralph makes multiple video appearances throughout the course. Students are invited to leave comments and questions at the bottom of each class.


The TAR Course has Eighteen Classes:

  1. First Class: Background and History of Predictive Coding
  2. Second Class: Introduction to the Course
  3. Third Class:  TREC Total Recall Track, 2015 and 2016
  4. Fourth Class: Introduction to the Nine Insights from TREC Research Concerning the Use of Predictive Coding in Legal Document Review
  5. Fifth Class: 1st of the Nine Insights – Active Machine Learning
  6. Sixth Class: 2nd Insight – Balanced Hybrid and Intelligently Spaced Training (IST)
  7. Seventh Class: 3rd and 4th Insights – Concept and Similarity Searches
  8. Eighth Class: 5th and 6th Insights – Keyword and Linear Review
  9. Ninth Class: 7th, 8th and 9th Insights – SME, Method, Software; the Three Pillars of Quality Control
  10. Tenth Class: Introduction to the Eight-Step Work Flow
  11. Eleventh Class: Step One – ESI Communications
  12. Twelfth Class: Step Two – Multimodal ECA
  13. Thirteenth Class: Step Three – Random Prevalence
  14. Fourteenth Class: Steps Four, Five and Six – Iterative Machine Training
  15. Fifteenth Class: Step Seven – ZEN Quality Assurance Tests (Zero Error Numerics)
  16. Sixteenth Class: Step Eight – Phased Production
  17. Seventeenth Class: Another “Player’s View” of the Workflow (class added 2018)
  18. Eighteenth Class: Conclusion

With a lot of hard work you can complete this online training program in a long weekend, but most people take a few weeks. After that, this course can serve as a solid reference to consult during your complex document review projects. It is also recommended that you follow Losey’s personal blog, e-DiscoveryTeam, to stay current.


We call our latest version of AI enhanced document review taught here Predictive Coding 4.0.” We call it version 4.0 because it substantially improves upon and replaces the methods and insights we announced in our October 2015 publication – Predictive Coding 3.0. In the First Class of the TAR Course we explain the history of predictive coding software and methods in legal review, including versions 1.0 and 2.0. Unfortunately, most vendors are still stuck in these earlier methods. If you have tried predictive coding and did not like it, then the probable reason is that you used the vendors recommended, but wrong method. Either that, or the software was to blame, but it is probably the method. Many lawyers report that they attain better results when they follow their own methods, not the vendors default methods.

Most vendors are still promoting use of random based control sets based on a misunderstanding of statistics and search. The use of control sets is simply wrong and a waste of time. We never saw any of these same vendors at TREC and for good reason. They do not keep up with the latest developments in search science. They are a business. We are not. The e-Discovery Team is a group of lawyers, lead by Ralph Losey, a practicing attorney. We are lawyers sharing what we know with other lawyers (and vendors).

We offer this information for free on this blog to encourage as many people as possible in this industry to get on the AI bandwagon. Predictive coding is based on active machine learning, which is a classic, powerful type of Artificial Intelligence (AI). Our Predictive Coding 4.0 method is designed to harness this power to help attorneys find key evidence in ESI quickly and effectively.



Familiarity with these two websites is a prerequisite for this course:

TECHNOLOGY ASSISTED REVIEW (TAR), which is also called Computer Assisted Review (CAR). General Introduction to the e-Discovery Team’s approach to document review using active machine learning, a type of specialized Artificial Intelligence.

LEGAL SEARCH SCIENCE. The Team’s introduction to this new interdisciplinary field. It is concerned with the search, review, and classification of large collections of electronic documents to find information for use as evidence in legal proceedings, for compliance to avoid litigation, or for general business intelligence.

Go on to Class One.

Students are invited to leave a public comment below. Insights that might help other students are especially welcome. Let’s collaborate!

Ralph Losey COPYRIGHT 2018, 2023


32 Responses to TAR Course

  1. […] minute video. It now serves as the core video introduction to the e-Discovery Team’s free TAR Course. It is found in the first of the sixteen classes in the Course. I also revised and improved the […]

  2. […] new enhancements were made to the TAR Course this weekend, including additions and revisions to the written materials, new graphics, new […]

  3. […] improved the TAR Course again by adding a video focusing on the three iterated steps in the eight-step workflow of […]

  4. Mary Mack says:

    Ralph, this course is a wonderful gift to the community. Thank you.

    The other gift is your humble apology for the 1.0 protocol. I do not think it necessary as you were first to black letter. Yet an apology for impact is so rare in law or technology that it may persuade those who were turned off by seed set production to try again. I will be recommending your course to our ACEDS community. I’ve heard that EDRM is putting pencil to paper on TAR.

  5. Ralph Losey says:

    The second word is Then.

  6. gvc says:


    Your “four door” photo suggests that CAL uses control sets. Maura and I coined and trademarked the term CAL so that we could control what is described as CAL. No method properly described as CAL uses control sets.

    Please correct this misleading image.


  7. Ralph Losey says:

    I am relieved to hear that. I have never read you write about control sets. Many used CAL and still use control sets. But I understand your concern and will change right away.

    • gvc says:

      To be pedantic, if they say they “used CAL” without our endorsement, they did not use the CAL method for technology assisted review.

  8. […] This is another new video for the e-Discovery Team’s TAR Course. It is included in the new First Class that we just added to the […]

  9. […] on AI-enhanced document review, new material has been added to the e-Discovery Team’s TAR Course. The new content includes two video lectures that provide examples of applications of the methods […]

  10. […] three videos in this blog on the Hacker Way are also included in the First Class of the TAR […]

  11. […] two videos in this blog on the Hacker Way are also included in the Welcome page of the TAR Course. Other minor improvements were made this week to the Welcome and the First […]

  12. […] of them all, finding the needles of relevance in cosmic-sized haystacks of irrelevant noise. TARcourse.com. We now know what is required to do e-discovery correctly. EDBP.com. We have the software and […]

  13. […] have added a homework assignment to Class Sixteen of the TAR Course. This is the next to last class in the course. Here we cover the eighth step of […]

  14. […] and pertain to e-discovery. They show the application of the principles in legal search. See eg TARcourse.com. The principles have obvious applications in all aspects of society, not just the Law and […]

  15. […] have also made available a free online instruction program on predictive coding called the TARcourse.com.  The flow-chart shown below is fully explained in the course. We have done or supervised hundreds […]

  16. […] have been getting those kinds of positive feelings consistently by using the latest Predictive Coding 4.0 methodology (shown right) and KrolLDiscovery’s latest eDiscovery.com Review software […]

  17. […] to testify at any time to explain my now open-source methodology, Predictive Coding 4.0. See Eg. TARcourse.com. Most good experts are. But, so far, there have been no challenges, nor any reason for disputes. […]

  18. […] open-sourced eight-step process for document review using predictive coding. (Classes 10-16 of the TARcourse.com) This new Key Players diagram is another way of describing the iterative process that makes up the […]

  19. […] Doors Are Thrown Open to all 85-Classes of the e-Discovery Team Training Program. I also created a TAR Course last year, again free, which I continue to update. Announcing the e-Discovery Team’s TAR Training […]

  20. […] your hands in the digital mud. Go deep into TAR if you need to. It is where the time warps happen and we bend space and time to attain maximum […]

  21. […] search methods, such as active machine learning (predictive coding), at least among the elite. See TARcourse.com. There is still some disagreement on TAR methods, especially when you include the many pseudo […]

  22. […] estimate that 98% of lawyers today do not, then hire an expert. (Or take the time to learn, see eg TARcourse.com.) Your vendor probably has a couple of search experts. There may also be a lawyer in town with this […]

  23. […] whould instead of focused on methods. The e-Discovery Team methods are spelled out in detail in the TAR Course. Maybe that is what Entrata followed? Probably not. Maybe, God forbid, Entrata used random driven […]

  24. […] Ralph isn’t just interested in picking apart current cases, though; he wants every attorney to have the opportunity to master ediscovery. To that end, he offers a free 85-class training program in electronic discovery law as well as an advanced program specifically focused on his current specialty, technology-assisted review (TAR). […]

  25. […] Doors Are Thrown Open to all 85-Classes of the e-Discovery Team Training Program. I also created a TAR Course last year, again free, which I continue to update. Announcing the e-Discovery Team’s TAR Training […]

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