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Clinical Data Management Certificate and Certification Programs

Current or aspiring medical professionals who are interested in gaining the credentials necessary to become clinical data managers or clinical research associates can enroll in a Clinical Data Management Certificate program. These programs are typically offered through the extension departments of 4-year universities and community colleges, or through health science organizations.

Essential Information

A certificate program in clinical data management provides students with an understanding of how clinical trials for pharmaceutical drugs and other medical products are designed and executed. Prospective students should have a basic understanding of natural sciences and laboratory sciences before embarking on such a course of study. Certification requires a degree and significant work experience.

Some certificate programs in clinical data management are post-baccalaureate programs. Interested students should have a bachelor's or master's degree in a field like biology, health sciences or natural sciences.

  • Some Clinical Data Management Program Fields: Clinical trial data management systems, Patient recruitment for trials

Certificate in Clinical Data Management

Clinical data managers coordinate and oversee the clinical trials used to test new pharmaceutical drugs and medical devices. The courses included in a clinical data management certificate program cover clinical topics, regulatory topics, scientific topics and project management topics related to the field of clinical research.

Students learn how to monitor trials, perform proper safety protocols, meet industry regulations and record accurate data. They are also typically required to complete basic training in management and communication. Some specific courses might include:

  • Clinical trials design
  • Human subjects protection
  • Drug safety
  • Monitoring clinical trials
  • Writing medical reports
  • Clinical study management

Popular Career Info

A clinical data research associate or clinical data manager can work for a variety of organizations in the healthcare and pharmaceutical field. Some types of companies hiring such professionals include pharmaceutical companies, biotechnology organizations, academic medical centers, hospitals, and federal regulations department.

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) classifies clinical data managers as statisticians, and it expects 27% employment growth during the 2012-2022 decade, which is about as fast as average (www.bls.gov). Payscale.com reported in May 2015 that clinical data managers earned between $38,985 and $102,907 annually, with the median salary being $67,138.

Certification Options

The Society for Clinical Data Management (SCDM) offers certification for clinical data managers. A bachelor's degree and two years of professional experience are required before interested professionals are qualified to sit for the certification examination. They can also qualify if they have an associate's degree and three years of professional experience or else four years of full-time professional experience.

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