The 10 Best Online Clinical Research Certificate Programs in 2023

Good, pertinent training is crucial for overall professional development. The correct information and the right mindset are essential to highly specialized businesses like clinical research. It is vital to have trained Clinical Research professionals working throughout a clinical trial due to the complexity of the entire drug development process and its effect on human health.

Best Online Clinical Research Certificate Programs - fact

Many graduates pursue careers as Clinical Research Associates (CRAs) or Clinical Research Coordinators (CRCs). They could help with surveys and other types of research, organize clinical procedures, submit information to the FDA, and more.

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To ethically conduct clinical trials, a person at the Clinical Research Associate (CRA) level must have a solid working understanding of the ICH GCP standards and the relevant Clinical Research regulations published by various regulatory agencies.

The Lowdown

Well-trained and educated staff members will help organizations and research teams succeed and uphold integrity during clinical trials. Clinical Research training should be given more attention in the current hectic world.


Due to the rising number of clinical certificate programs available, it’s often hard to track which are the good ones. To help you out, we did a thorough sweep of clinical certificate programs and ensured that they:

  • Offer intensive Clinical Research courses that will keep you updated on in-demand knowledge and skills to prepare you for various Clinical Research careers,
  • Require NO GMAT or GRE for a more straightforward application process,
  • Have earned regional accreditation,
  • Deliver lectures online, allowing you to conveniently access them over a laptop, tablet, or smartphone.

Please visit our Methodology page and see our detailed ranking process.

10 Best Online Clinical Research Certificate Programs

Drexel University

Drexel University - Online

Clinical Research Certificate Program Online

The Certificate in Clinical Research Program at Drexel University allows students to earn their credentials through a 100% learning format. 

  • The program requires students to complete 15 credits for up to 7 years, making it one of the most flexible Clinical Research certificate programs.
  • Students explore several courses, from business fundamentals to industry best practices.
  • In addition to earning 15 credits, students must pass five graduate-level courses from the MS in Clinical Research Organization and Management (CROM) curriculum.
  • Online students will learn from a distinguished faculty. 

What Makes This Program Unique:

This online certificate program allows its students to customize their program plans fully. Programs of study are made individually and are tailored to your career goals.

Did You Know?

Drexel is famous for offering strategic and leadership-focused courses. In addition, students can add “special topics” to their program, including Compliance and Safety Surveillance, Ethics and Law, Clinical Research Management, and many more. You can also use the credits in the certificate to pursue the Clinical Research program at the master’s degree level.

University of Delaware

University of Delaware

Online Clinical Trials Management Certificate

The University of Delaware’s Online Clinical Trials Management Certificate objectives and courses align with the Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP) exam content. 

  • The program has 14-week courses, which allow students to complete the courses at their own pace. 
  • There will be three optional live online discussions for students who want to be involved in the synchronous component. 
  • The program includes a comprehensive review of the core competencies for the effective execution of a new product development process.

What Makes This Program Unique:

Applicants for the Clinical Trials Management Certificate online should have a solid science and healthcare background and an associate’s degree-level coursework. 

Did You Know?

Credits for this online certificate program are considered as a Lower Level Health Science Elective of Wilmington University’s Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences.

Arizona State University

Arizona State University

Online Clinical Research Management Graduate Certificate

The Online Clinical Research Management Graduate Certificate is a post-baccalaureate certification for students interested in jumpstarting a career in research. 

  • Students will explore courses that amp up their managerial, leadership and analytical skills for Clinical Research operations.
  • Responsible Conduct of Clinical Research, Clinical Research Data Management and Technology Implementation, Fundamentals of Regulatory Affairs, and Clinical Research Operations are the online courses of this certificate program.
  • Students will be exposed to current events, case studies, and situations in the field. 

What Makes This Program Unique:

ASU’s graduates have access to various mentorship and job placement opportunities. Students will learn from world-renowned faculty members. 

Did You Know?

ASU is one of the best schools to earn certificates and degree programs at a low cost. 

Boston University

Boston University

Online Graduate Certificate Program in Clinical Research

Boston’s Online Graduate Certificate Program in Clinical Research is designed to help students prepare for the Clinical Research Coordinator (CRC) exam offered by the Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP). 

  • Students gain a critical understanding of the scientific foundations of human research.
  • The program includes significant components of clinical investigation, such as trial design and conduct, Clinical Research regulations and good practices, and the critical assessment of Clinical Research in the medical literature. 
  • Graduates can apply the credit hours towards BU’s MSCR degree upon completion. 

What Makes This Program Unique:

The program was created to help professionals in the clinical and health field, including doctors, research nurses, managers in Clinical Research and site managers, and many more. The knowledge and skills obtained can also be used for careers in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device sectors.

Did You Know?

Earning a certificate from Boston University will increase your chances of employment. BU is one of the most prestigious Association of American Universities (AAU) schools, which brings together the best research universities in the US and Canada.

John Hopkins University

Johns Hopkins University

Clinical Trials Certificate Program Online

John Hopkins University’s Clinical Trials Certificate Program allows students to study online, on-campus, or in a hybrid learning format. 

  • Students must complete at least 18 credits for planning, carrying out, and analyzing clinical trials. 
  • Introduction to epidemiology, clinical trial design and interpretation, and clinical trial methodology are among the required core courses in clinical trials. 
  • Students must enroll in at least two more clinical trial-related or research ethics and biostatistics courses.

What Makes This Program Unique:

Students must create a methodology and plan for gaining consent for a randomized clinical study, such as a sample consent statement. 

Did You Know?

While this degree is aimed at students with a degree in any Clinical Research field, non-degree students can apply for the program. However, there will be different admissions processes for degree and non-degree holders. 

George Washington University

George Washington University

Graduate Certificate in Clinical Research Practice Online

The Graduate Certificate in Clinical Research Practice Online at George Washington University is one of the best certificates that prepare students for evidence-based practice in clinical research. 

  • Students must complete 15 credits, which often take one year to complete. 
  • The coursework is 100% online with zero on-campus meetings.
  • All credits earned from the certificate program are transferable to the MSHS in Clinical and Translational Research. 
  • Graduates will be able to control Clinical Research at the level of the study location and ensure that Good Clinical Practice is followed. 
  • Additionally, graduates can help increase the practice’s Clinical Research capacity.

What Makes This Program Unique:

The certificate is intended for working MDs, PAs, PTs, OTs, and other allied health professionals who want to collaborate on funded research initiatives. Courses expand to relevant laws, rules, and institutional policies overseeing clinical research.

Did You Know?

The program’s director, Dr. Samar Nasser, co-authors ethnic disparities and cardiovascular disease/hypertension journal articles and book chapters.

University of Hawaii – Manoa

University of Hawaii – Manoa

Online Graduate Certificate in Clinical Research

UH at Moana’s Online Graduate Certificate in Clinical Research allows students to complete the program part-time or full-time. 

  • Students must complete 15 credits exploring topics about Clinical Research and trial design, protocol development, and ethical conduct. 
  • The program enhances the student’s statistical data analysis skills. 
  • Students who enroll full-time can complete the program in nine months, while those who study part-time take up to two years. 

What Makes This Program Unique:

This program helps students interested in medicine or biomedical research, making it one of the best ways to prepare for medical school. 

Did You Know?

UH at Moana offers one of the most affordable certificate programs in clinical research, which only costs $650 per credit hour.

University of Missouri

University of Missouri - Online

Clinical Research Graduate Online Certificate

Mizzou’s online Clinical Research Graduate Certificate is designed for students who want to build on their undergraduate skills and knowledge without immersing in a master’s degree program. 

  • This 15-credit online graduate degree covers the fundamentals of protocol building and essential research methodologies. 
  • Students will be updated on Clinical Research trends since the program uses real-world examples and practical computer applications.
  • Students typically complete the program in two semesters, taking six to nine courses each semester.
  • Courses are entirely online.

What Makes This Program Unique:

The coursework of this online Clinical Research certificate program has overlapping content with the MS in bioinformatics. Students who want to advance their education can easily transfer the 15 credits to the master’s degree program. 

Did You Know?

Non-degree students can still apply for up to 6 credits but are not guaranteed enrollment. 

University of Minnesota

University of Minnesota

Online Certificate Program In Clinical Research

The Online Certificate Program In Clinical Research at the University of Minnesota is designed to help healthcare professionals gain proper knowledge in implementing and managing Clinical Research studies.

  • It is a three-year certificate program. Students must complete 16 credit hours to graduate. 
  • Students learn to understand various research designs and methods, evaluate scholarly publications, recognize outcomes, and perform outcomes-based research.
  • Core courses include Fundamentals of Clinical Research, Fundamentals of Epidemiology, Biostatistics I, Ethics in Public Health, and Clinical Trials. 

What Makes This Program Unique:

The program aims to help students better understand the disease, therapeutic approaches, clinical trials, and other topics. Graduates will develop the skills necessary to do patient-centered research while interacting directly with human patients.

Did You Know?

UM provides an exceptional and supportive setting for aspiring Clinical Research professionals. UM’s facility for Clinical Research training is known as a leading academic Clinical Research center with a sizable Clinical Research portfolio.

Berkeley Extension

Berkeley Extension

Hybrid Certificate Program in Clinical Research Conduct and Management

Students who want a more hands-on learning approach should consider Berkeley’s Hybrid Certificate Program in Clinical Research Conduct and Management

  • Students must complete 12 semester units through a hybrid learning format. 
  • Students dedicated 180 hours to learning about clinical trial processes, including trial phases and design, best clinical practices, discovering and developing new drugs, and quality control and assurance. 
  • The program also emphasizes the importance of learning the legalities of conducting clinical trials. 
  • Students learn from experts in academia and business.

What Makes This Program Unique:

It is one of the most competitive online certificate programs. Students must maintain a 2.5 minimum GPA to graduate. 

Did You Know?

While the has no specific prerequisite requirements, students with a bachelor’s degree in a technical or scientific field have higher chances for acceptance.

Career Opportunities in Clinical Research

Clinical Research provides a wide range of career options. Graduates can work in pharmaceutical and biotechnology firms, medical device manufacturers, contract research organizations, hospitals, academic institutions, and more.

Here are three of the most popular career paths in clinical research:

Clinical Research Coordinator

CRCs are responsible for monitoring and managing the day-to-day operations of Clinical Research studies. They work in various Clinical Research sites, including hospitals, independent medical practices, universities, medical schools, and other research companies and institutions.

Clinical Research Associate

CRAs collaborate with clinical trial locations to monitor trials and guarantee that general operational, regulatory, and ethical requirements are upheld.

Clinical Research Data Specialist

The management and analysis of Clinical Research are the responsibilities of the Clinical Research data specialist. They look for related studies, electronic health records, and other information from many sources and systems.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Clinical Research Certifications and Clinical Research Certificates the same?

Many people think that having a certificate and a certification is the same. However, there’s a big difference between being certified and obtaining a certificate. 

A Clinical Research certificate is given to students who complete a certificate program offered by colleges and universities. On the other hand, a Clinical Research certification is given to someone who passed standardized exams in clinical research, such as the ACRP Certification exam. 

What’s the difference between Clinical Research vs. Clinical Trial Certificate?

The difference between Clinical Research and clinical trial certificates is their focus. Clinical Research certificates focus on preparing students to perform, interpret, and use clinical research. Clinical trial certificates prepare students to oversee the creation and execution of clinical trial designs.


  • Pursuing an online certificate program in Clinical Research or clinical trial is one of the best ways to develop skills and obtain new knowledge without spending years on a master’s degree program. 
  • Professionals who want to focus on the overall Clinical Research design should pursue a clinical trial certificate. In contrast, those who wish to conduct and implement research should pursue a Clinical Research certificate.

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