Clinical Research Certificate

About the Program

The clinical research field is a new, stimulating, and innovative career choice with many job opportunities. As the development of drug and medical devices increases, there is a need for scientifically trained professionals to coordinate research studies.

This program will give you an understanding of the landscape of clinical research including the duties of the following roles: clinical research associate (CRA), clinical research coordinator (CRC), data specialist, subject recruiter, research billing officer, compliance administrator, and other specialties.

Required Coursework:


Free Information Session

Wednesday, January 26, 2022

6:00 PM
Live via Zoom



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Please Note: All Clinical Research courses are being held online via Zoom.

Our Clinical Research Certificate Program includes a rigorous curriculum to prepare you for today's competitive marketplace.

All courses can be completed in less than three months or you can spread them out over two years. This is a Continuing Education program; it does not have an application process, and offers contact hours. We welcome you to register at any time.. 


Registrations are non-transferrable and final.  NO REFUNDS. T


About Clinical Research

Clinical research has developed into a complex set of activities, highly dependent on effective teamwork and integration of efforts by people with different backgrounds and disciplines. Because of the highly specialized nature of many aspects of the research process, there are many opportunities for individuals to specialize in areas such as data management, biostatistics, subject recruitment, and more. One important goal of this certificate program is to offer a clearer picture of these opportunities while at the same time providing a foundation in the basic principles of clinical research. 

The past few decades have seen an explosion of our knowledge of basic biology, chemistry, and the pathophysiology of disease. This has inevitably led to the application and testing of these findings in the clinical setting, employing a variety of approaches including in vitro studies with human tissues, ex vivo studies, epidemiologic research, and clinical trials. Clinical research, which encompasses all these approaches, has evolved and gained in sophistication and complexity. It now represents an accepted discipline to be taught with a formal curriculum.

These multidisciplinary courses have been designed for professionals interested in moving into the field of pharmaceutical/clinical research. Hospitals and pharmaceutical companies seek out nurses or people with a science background for these roles because they have a scientific knowledge base, good interpersonal skills, and experience working with physicians and other nurses. Participants also use this certificate program as a refresher or as a review for certification examination.

This certificate program provides you with the tools you need to become successful in today's rigorous marketplace. All topics can be completed in less than two semesters. To earn a certificate, a student must:

  • Successfully complete all of the required courses within a two-year period
  • In order to receive contact hours, participants must attend the course and complete the examinations.

Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP) is forming a multi-stakeholder task force charged with defining the core competencies required of entry-level clinical research associates (CRAs).

This task force will identify the competencies required of entry-level CRAs/monitors, develop measures of competence, and advocate for standardization of identified CRA competencies across the clinical research enterprise.

This announcement follows publication of a position paper examining the current CRA workforce and calling for elimination of the commonly accepted and practiced two-year experience requirement for entry-level CRAs in favor of competence-based employment practices (see: A New Approach to Developing the CRA Workforce).

The arbitrary 2-years' experience requirement is contributing to a shortage of CRAs in the clinical research profession and is leading to inefficiencies at contract research organizations and clinical trial sponsors while doing nothing to ensure quality in clinical research.

There are at least 10,000 CRA open positions in the United States alone, and there is no evidence to suggest that number will decline anytime soon. A recent Brookings study, lamenting an overall employee shortage throughout the life sciences industry, singled out the CRA as one of the positions most in need of recruitment.

Massachusetts BioPharma Industry Employment has grown

9-10 times faster than the state and national
growth rates for all employment.*

There are more than 550 biotech and pharmaceutical companies located in Massachusetts; 314 of these companies are drug development companies. (

In a highly competitive job market like that seen during the economic downturn, education becomes an increasingly important factor in candidate selection, especially early in the hiring process when employers are likely to use degree held as a way to narrow the applicant field. (

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW); MassBio

The field of Clinical Research is rapidly expanding and there are many career opportunities. This program will give you an understanding of the "landscape" of clinical research, including the duties of the following roles: Clinical Research Associate (CRA), Clinical Research Coordinator (CRC), data specialist, subject recruiter, research billing officer, compliance administrator, and other specialties.