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  • Clinical Research Certificate Program Online

    Certificate of Study in Clinical Research

    Drexel University’s nationally ranked College of Medicine offers an online Certificate of Study in Clinical Research. The online clinical research certificate program, taught by industry experts, is designed for a wide range of professionals seeking clinical research credentials and career-movers who want to break ground in the clinical research field.

    Program at a Glance

    • Semester Credits: 15 credits
    • Average Completion Time: 1 to 2 years
      • You may take up to 7 years to complete the program
    • No on-campus requirements
    • No thesis requirements
    • Plans of study are created on a case-by-case basis and customized to your career plans
    • Interactive coursework
    • Expert faculty
    • No application fee

    What is a Certificate in Clinical Research?

    The online Certificate of Study in Clinical Research is a 15-semester credit program that covers both business principles and clinical research industry best practices. To earn your professional credential at Drexel, you’ll complete five graduate-level courses that draw content from the MS in Clinical Research Organization and Management (CROM) curriculum. Three of these courses are:

    • Intro to Clinical Trials
    • Pharmaceutical Law
    • Fundamentals of Compliance

    These three core courses help you keep pace with the changes in the clinical research, financial, legal, and regulatory environments. You’ll also be able to tailor your study plan to career goals through two elective courses. As a result, you’ll be able to build skills that are relevant to you and can help you navigate the evolving clinical research landscapes successfully.

    Take a Broad Range of Clinical Research Courses Online

    Some of Drexel’s more popular clinical research online courses pertain to building leadership skills and strategic planning. We also offer several “special topics” courses which you can take as electives. These fall under the following broad clinical research categories:

    • New Product Research and Development
    • Compliance and Safety Surveillance
    • Ethics and Law
    • Regulatory Affairs
    • Biostatistics and Data Management
    • Clinical Research Management
    • New Therapeutic Product Business and Strategic Planning

    Academic Plans of Study

    Students who pursue Drexel’s clinical research certificate online may apply their credits toward the full MS in Clinical Research Organization and Management program.

    Will this program prepare me for ACRP and SOCRA certification?

    Coupled with other certification requirements, the online Certificate of Study in Clinical Research program can help you prepare for ACRP or SOCRA certification. If this is your goal, we can help you map out your study plan.

    What Can I Do with A Certificate in Clinical Research?

    A Certificate in Clinical Research may help you pursue career paths such as Clinical Research Coordinator (CRC) and eventually Clinical Research Associate (CRA) opportunities. In both of these roles, you’ll likely find your skills are in high demand. Reports point to faster than average job growth (10 – 15 percent) by 2026.

    Clinical Research Coordinator (CRC)

    • What They Do: Clinical Research Coordinators plan the day-to-day clinical operations, oversee personnel, finance and the regulatory aspects of medical research trials.
    • Projected Job Outlook to 2026: 5,200 job openings and a 10 – 14% overall projected growth
    • Other job titles: Clinical Research Nurse Coordinator, Clinical Trial Manager, Clinical Research Administrator (CRA)
    • Related career paths: Clinical Data Managers, Regulatory Affairs Managers
    • Workforce Data: 350 direct employers currently competing for CRC talent.
    • Possible clinical research courses to take as electives: Designing the Clinical Trial, International Regulatory Affairs, Clinical Trial Budgeting, Fundamentals of Academic Research Administration.

    Clinical Research Associate

    • What They Do: Clinical Research Associates assist in laboratory, survey and other science research, prepare findings for publication, manage databases, harness participant information, conduct reports, and oversee quality control.
    • Projected Job Outlook to 2026: 4,400 new job openings by 2026 and 15% + overall projected growth
    • Other job titles: Clinical Data Manager (CDM), Clinical Informatics Manager, Clinical Data Associate
    • Related career paths: Regulatory Affairs Specialists, Social Science Research Assistant
    • Workforce Data: 263 direct employers currently competing for CRA talent
    • Possible clinical research courses to take as electives: Patient Recruitment and Informed Consent, Clinical Data Management, Scientific Writing and Medical Literature, Current Issues in Review Boards

    What are the Salary Expectations for a Certificate in Clinical Research?

    Salaries in the clinical research field vary widely due to several contributing factors. These can include your education level, certifications, work experience, location and overall skill level.

    Job Title

    Annual Median Salary (2017)

    Clinical Research Associate


    Clinical Research Coordinator


    Research Analyst


    Related Programs

    Drexel University also offers other online clinical research master’s and certificate programs designed to match your career goals:

    If you have questions, please contact:

    Patricia Cashin
    Academic Administrator

    State restrictions may apply to some programs.


    Learn more about how Drexel's courses align with the competency domains identified by the Joint Taskforce for Clinical Trial Competency.

    CR 515S Intro to Clinical Trials 3.0
    CR 545S Pharmaceutical Law 3.0
    CR 612S Fundamentals of Compliance 3.0
    Electives *  
    Select two of the following: 6.0
    New Product Research and Development  
    CR 525S
    Scientific Writing and Medical Literature  
    CR 600S
    Designing the Clinical Trial  
    CR 609S
    Innovative Product Development  
    CR 614S
    Introduction to Clinical Pharmacology  
    CR 620S
    Regulatory, Scientific, and Social Issues Affecting Biotech Research  
    Compliance and Safety Surveillance  
    CR 555S
    Compliance & Monitoring Issues  
    CR 570S
    Principles and Practice of Pharmacovigilance  
    CR 633S
    Quaility Assurance Audits  
    Ethics and Law  
    CR 505S
    Ethical Issues in Research  
    CR 511S
    The History of Misconduct in Biomedical Research  
    CR 565S
    Contemporary Issues in Human Research Protection  
    CR 639S
    Quality Assurance Audits  
    CR 501S
    Emerging Trends in Medical Device Regulation  
    CR 508S
    Medical Devices and Combination Product Regulation  
    CR 514S
    World Wide Regulatory Submissions  
    CR 523S
    Current Issues in Review Boards  
    CR 535S
    Current Federal Regulatory Issues in Biomedical Research  
    CR 551S
    International Regulatory Affairs  
    CR 573S
    Patient Generated Data in Clinical Research  
    Biostatistics and Data Management  
    CR 500S
    CR 520S
    Applications of Clinical Research Biostatistics  
    CR 527S
    Clinical Data Management  
    CR 571S
    Health Information Technology in Biomedical R&D  
    CR 631S
    Applications of Clinical Research Biostatistics II  
    Clinical Research Management  
    CR 510S
    Sponsored Projects Finance  
    CR 512S
    Fundamentals of Academic Research Administration  
    CR 536S
    Clinical Project Management  
    CR 541S
    Patient Recruitment & Informed Consent  
    CR 550S
    Leadership Skills  
    CR 637S
    Risk Management in Clinical Research  
    New Therapeutic Product Business and Strategic Planning  
    CR 513S
    Business Processes and Contemporary Concerns in Pharmaceutical R & D  
    CR 518S
    Clinical Trial Budgeting  
    CR 546S
    Clinical Outsourcing  
    CR 617S
    Informatics in Pharm Res & Development  
    CR 625S
    Health Policy and Economics  
    CR 635S
    Strategic Planning  
    Total Credits 15.0

    *Courses not listed above may be taken as electives only with the approval of the program director.

    View Course Descriptions

    Admissions Criteria

    • A bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution in the United States or an equivalent international institution
    • Cumulative GPA of 3.0 (graduate degree GPA will be considered along with the undergraduate GPA)

    Required Documents

    With multiple ways to submit documents, Drexel makes it easy to complete your application. Learn more by visiting our Completing Your Application Guide.

    A telephone interview may be requested.


    The tuition rate for the academic year 2023-2024 is $653 per credit. (A 50% tuition savings off Drexel's regular tuition rate of $1305 per credit)

    For the academic year 2023-2024, students enrolled in an online graduate academic program will be charged a graduate online program fee of $125 per year.

    • This program is not eligible for Financial Aid.
    • Special tuition rates are available for Drexel University AlumniMilitary members, and members of our Partner Organizations.
      • These rates apply only to new online students and students being readmitted.
      • These rates apply only to fully online courses. Hybrid or on-campus courses may have different rates.
      • Tuition rates are subject to increase with the start of each academic year in the fall term.
      • All students must contact applyDUonline@drexel.edu within the first two weeks of the term to request tuition savings for which they qualify.
      • Special rates cannot be combined. If you qualify for more than one special rate, you'll be given the one with the largest savings.
      • When receiving special tuition plans with Drexel University Online, you may not combine them with other tuition benefits that may be available from Drexel University.


    Academic Calendar

    2023-2024 Academic Year


    Classes Begin

    Classes End

    Fall 2023

    August 21, 2023

    December 15, 2023

    Spring 2024

    January 8, 2024

    May 3, 2024

    Summer 2024

    May 13, 2024

    August 2, 2024


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