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Master of Clinical and Translational Research Degree

The Georgetown-Howard Universities Center for Clinical Translational Science (GHUCCTS) offers both a Master of Science and a graduate certificate degree in Clinical and Translational Research (CTR) based at Georgetown University. These graduate programs provide a rigorous grounding in  research methods, study design and data analysis, as well as prepare our students to propose, conduct manage, and report clinical and translational research in an ethically responsible manner. The MS-CTR is targeted primarily to doctorally-trained clinicians (MD, PhD, PharmD, DDS, DMD, or DNP) or research professionals especially those at GHUCCTS institutions (Georgetown University, Howard University, MedStar Research Institute, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and the Washington Veteran's Affairs Medical Center), nearby federal agencies, foundations, healthcare organizations,  or industry.

The MS-CTR is a 33-credit degree program, including a required mentored research project, in which trainees have the opportunity to acquire skills in project design and associated grant preparation, effective communication of research results and skills for clinical investigation. Our research ethics course explores ethical considerations and issues pertaining to biomedical research with human subjects; our project development in clinical research course guides trainees through the development of clear and testable hypotheses; the biostatistics and clinical trials design courses assist trainees with the selection of appropriate methods and design of a rigorous data analysis plan; and our cultural competence in translational research course is designed to increase awareness and knowledge of how the delivery and acceptance of health care may be influenced by social, cultural and environmental factors to reduce health disparities.

MS-CTR students have the opportunity to specialize in at least one of four areas of concentration: Mechanistic and Biomedical Research, Clinical Trials and Research, Health Disparities & Community Engagement, and Regulatory Science.

The graduate certificate in CTR  is a 16-credit program that includes core courses in research ethics, biostatistics, clinical trials design, clinical research administration, as well as a required directed reading/independent study project. This program helps students become well-versed in research methods as well as essential clinical research methods. The program aims to prepare students with skills in project design and associated grant preparation, effective communication of research results and emerging powerful tools for clinical investigation. Students who successfully complete the required coursework have the opportunity to transfer credits toward the MS-CTR program.

Both the MS and graduate certificate programs offer flexible class scheduling that focuses on evening meeting times, distance learning/hybrid format, and virtual faculty office hours.

Applicants interested in taking courses as non-degree may register for course via Georgetown's School of Continuing Studies (SCS).  Additional information about the requirements and application process can be found on their website for Non-Degree Programs.

CTR Program information, detailed course descriptions, and the online application can be found here. 

Joseph Verbalis, MD and Thomas Mellman, MD, Co-Directors of GHUCCTS:

“There is a nationally-recognized critical need for rigorous graduate education of clinicians to enable them to conduct high quality clinical and translational research. The National Institutes of Health has mandated the establishment of new training programs such as this for Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) institutions in order to train the clinician scientists of the future,” said Joseph Verbalis, M.D., co-director of the center and professor of medicine at Georgetown University.

“This proposed program advances the important strategic partnership between Georgetown and Howard Universities and between Georgetown and its clinical partner institutions in the Georgetown-Howard Universities Center for Clinical and Translational Science (GHUCCTS).” said Thomas Mellman, co-director of GHUCCTS and professor of psychiatry and associate dean for Clinical and translational research at Howard University.

Jason Umans, MD, Director of the M.S. Degree Program:

“There has been a recent, rapid, and ongoing shift in the manner in which NIH study sections evaluate the preparation of young clinical investigators who seek extramural grant support for their clinical research projects. The MD degree, even when followed by a superb mentored research experience during fellowship training no longer suffices, as it has until very recently, and an additional MS degree in CTR or an overlapping discipline is rapidly becoming a de facto requirement for academic success.” said Jason Umans, Director of the M.S. in Clinical and Translational Research.