Delivering Excellence in Lifelong Learning
Two female health researchers looking into a microscope in a lab Two female health researchers looking into a microscope in a lab

Applied Clinical Research

Imagine Better Health.

Your key to entering the rewarding field of clinical research.


The Applied Clinical Research program, offered by McMaster University Continuing Education and affiliated with the Faculty of Health Sciences, is designed for individuals seeking to enter the field of clinical research to enhance their knowledge and skills required for employment. 

Program content is based on common areas of knowledge and skills for clinical research associates and managers as identified by a North American Advisory Board and the competencies of the Internationally-focused Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP).

Students are given a three-year period to complete all required components of the certificate program. The requirement is based on the need to remain current with legal, regulatory and ethical considerations in the field of work. 

Applied Clinical Research Program Overview

  • 5 courses
  • 100% online
  • Open enrolment - no application required!
  • A typical student would finish the program as fast as one year (over three terms), or one year and eight months (over five terms) 

Complete in One Year



Complete in One Year, Eight Months 


Who should take the Applied Clinical Research program

  • Professionals from a variety of academic backgrounds, including health sciences, medicine, nursing, health informatics, or epidemiology. 

Career Opportunities from the Applied Clinical Research Program include:

  • Research Associate
  • Clinical Research Associate
  • Clinical Research Project Manager
  • Clinical Research Assistant / Assistant Clinical Researcher
  • Senior Clinical Research Associate 
  • Clinical Research Coordinator
  • Research Associate in a specific discipline/specialty (i.e. Oncology Research Associate
  • Clinical Trial Supervisor
  • Clinical Trial Coordinator

Objectives of the Applied Clinical Research Program

Students will be able to:

  • Describe Good Clinical Practice (GCP) requirements and explain the legal and regulatory issues in clinical research
  • Construct a clinical research protocol and critique flawed and exemplary studies
  • Differentiate the key elements of successful study and site management 
  • Examine ethical issues in clinical research and select appropriate approaches strategies to navigate 
  • Practice the leadership and communication skills needed in a clinical research setting
  • Demonstrate an awareness of ethical practices and professional standards applicable to the field of clinical research
  • Exemplify the skills, attitudes and behaviours required to effectively communicate with various stakeholder groups engaged in clinical trails
  • Demonstrate personal management, leadership and project management skills

Program Delivery Format

  • All program courses in the Certificate will be delivered fully online. 
  • Delivery activities will include instructor lecture and/or presentations, readings, group discussions, and practical application activities. Where possible, simulation activities will be used to enhance experiential education.
  • The final capstone course will allow students to work virtually in groups. Each team will operationalize a mock clinical trail to simulate the real work environment by completing typical milestones. 

Please contact us for consultation to help determine if this program is right for you.


Watch the latest Program Preview to learn more:



"The courses at McMaster Continuing Education were high quality, the instructors were  great, and a great pace. I am enjoying these courses." - Aliana, Applied Clinical Research graduate