Master's Degree in Clinical Research

The Master's Degree Program in Clinical Research is a two-year course of study intended for graduate and professional students, clinical residents, post-doctoral fellows and faculty members who wish to master clinical research methods and pursue independent research careers.  Clinical research is defined broadly as any research where individual human beings or groups of human beings are the subjects of observation. This includes patient-oriented, translational, epidemiologic, comparative effectiveness, behavioral, outcomes or health services research. 

Coursework extends beyond that which is required for the ATCR Certificate Program. It includes instruction in advanced epidemiologic and biostatistical methods and specialized topics such as causal inference, prediction science, medical informatics, molecular methods in clinical research, and decision and cost-effectiveness analysis. The degree program also requires a comprehensive review of the literature in the scholar's field, presentation of original work at a national or international scientific meeting and publication of a peer-reviewed manuscript. To conduct their research, students work closely with mentors in their research fields and preceptors chosen from faculty in the Training in Clinical Research Program. 

A focused track in implementation science is available for students pursuing careers in the translation of evidence into practice. 

The master’s degree program strives to train individuals to become leaders of research efforts and teams. Program graduates are poised to work in a variety of research settings, including universities, public health departments, foundations and private industry. (Please note: The program does not provide instruction in laboratory investigation and is not intended for scholars who envision themselves primarily working in a wet laboratory.)

The master's degree program can be taken either as a stand-alone educational program or as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree such as the UCSF PhD Program in Epidemiology and Translational Sciences or medical, dental, pharmacy or nursing school.