VCU Bulletins

Clinical and Translational Sciences, Master of Science (M.S.)

Teraya Donaldson, Ph.D.
CCTR Graduate Education Program Coordinator
(804) 828-6671

Admission requirements summary

Clinical and Translational Sciences, Master of Science (M.S.)

of entry:

Fall preferred

Rolling admission


Target audience: Open to VCU junior faculty only. Applicants should be early-stage investigators with terminal degrees and a targeted research interest. A letter of support from the applicant’s department chair and commitment from an academic adviser is mandatory.

The Master of Science in Clinical and Translational Sciences program provides training and mentoring for a new generation of investigators who, regardless of primary area of interest, will be able to understand the methods and techniques used along the pathway from the bench to the bedside and beyond, to the community. The program emphasizes the importance of interdisciplinary approaches to research. The master’s degree can be earned upon completion of 30 credit hours that combine didactic course work and directed research, including a master’s capstone project in the form of a peer-reviewed journal article or a grant proposal. The program provides a sound foundation in clinical and translational research principles and thereby prepares the student to engage in many components of investigative processes.

Students are expected to attend the research seminar course each semester they are in the program (and register for the course a minimum of three times) in order to stay abreast of current health and human services research and to develop their communication skills. Additionally, the core includes a course on responsible conduct of research and scientific integrity, which will ensure that students understand the broad ethical implications of biobehavioral and biomedical research, understand what constitutes scientific fraud and misconduct, and are aware of their responsibilities as scientists.

Student learning outcomes

  1. Understand, integrate and apply relevant biomedical biobehavioral concepts and theoretical frameworks to research
  2. Comprehend, select and apply the appropriate study design to address specific health issues
  3. Critically review the scientific literature by applying sound research knowledge and principles to the review
  4. Apply data collection processes, information technology to create, maintain, and secure databases and other information
  5. Apply ethical principles to study design, data collection and dissemination
  6. Devise an analysis plan (statistical methodology) and analyze data using methods appropriate for the study design and type of data to be obtained
  7. Identify, interpret and implement relevant laws, regulations and policies related to specific studies and/or programs
  8. Plan, incorporate and use appropriate methods for the dissemination and adoption of clinical research findings
  9. Manage as a clinical translational research team leader, including the fiscal, personnel, facilities, regulatory assets, and scientific integrity of a funded clinical research program
  10. Effectively communicate specialist-to-specialist
  11. Effectively communicate specialist knowledge to non-specialists and lay people


Required courses (9 credits)

OVPR 601 Scientific Integrity, OVPR 602 Responsible Scientific Conduct or OVPR 603 Responsible Conduct of Research (1)
CCTR 520 Fundamentals of Research Regulation (2)
CCTR 690 Research Seminar in Clinical and Translational Sciences (1 credit for three semesters)
CCTR 700 Master’s Capstone Project (3)

The remaining 21 credits will be a combination of didactic course electives and directed research (CCTR 697).

Note: At least 3 credits of elective course work must be in biostatistics.

Remaining credits/courses will be selected by the student and his/her adviser. The program director reserves the right to review and make final determinations regarding the choice of electives.



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Last update: 10/9/2014

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