Clinical and Translational Research Graduate Programs

Master of Science Program in Clinical and Translational Research

The Master’s program in Clinical and Translational Research is designed to prepare health care professionals with the academic and research skills needed to be independent researchers. The program will focus on the preparation of individuals with established, terminal degrees in a health related field to conduct independent research in the translation of information from the basic sciences to the community. Graduates would be prepared to fulfill roles as researchers, teachers, public health administrators, clinicians, and industry employees competent to carry out the broad health mission of the State of Connecticut.

Program Overview

The Master of Science degree program in Clinical and Translational Research is administered by the Department of Medicine. The program stresses clinical research methods and research practica. The program is offered to individuals with a health related terminal degree (M.D., Ph.D., Pharm.D., D.D.S., or D.M.D.) and provides practical training in skills needed to conduct independent research. The Master’s Program is based on both course work and research experience, but no research thesis is required. Instead, students are expected to prepare a draft grant application and a publishable scientific report related to a particular area of translational research. The final examination consists of an oral defense of the grant application and the report.

Educational Requirements/Admission Criteria

Those eligible to apply for admission to the Master’s Program in Clinical and Translational Research (MCTR) must have successfully obtained a terminal degree in a health-related field, such as an M.D., Ph.D., Pharm.D., D.D.S., or D.M.D. Students who do not yet have an established terminal degree, but are enrolled and in good standing in a terminal degree granting program in a health-related field, may be eligible to apply.

Additional eligibility criteria:

  • A GPA of 3.0 from one’s last degree program
  • Proficiency in English as assessed by the TOEFL, if applicable (more information available here)
  • Clear interest in translational research, as articulated in a Personal Letter of Application

It is possible for exceptions to be made to the GPA requirement of 3.0. This is done based on a case-by-case basis. GRE scores are not required.

It is highly recommended that applicants have commitments in writing from a senior scientist stating his or her intention to mentor and supervise the student during the program. Major advisors must have a UConn faculty appointment.

The program admits, on average, 5 students per year. Each application is evaluated individually by the Executive Committee. Due to the small number of students who can be accommodated in this program, the admissions process is selective.

Course of Study

Each student’s academic program will be planned jointly by the student and the student’s major advisor based on academic and professional background and school requirements. Students will be required to complete 30 credits, anchored by required core courses in Clinical and Translational Research (9 credits). In addition, each student will be required to complete a 3-credit “translational research elective” course from a list of approved courses. Completion of a 3-6 credit course titled “Critical Issues Involving Science Publication: The Scientific Review,” will also be required to complete the plan of study for the degree in Clinical and Translational Research. Students will also be required to complete 12 credits in research to provide them with competency in the implementation of research methods, including hypothesis formulation, research design, quantitative and qualitative methods, data analysis and computer application. After completion of the course work, students will prepare for their final examination. The final examination (oral presentation) consists of a 30-40 minute presentation of a grant proposal and scientific report describing a completed research project, followed by 20 minutes for questions by members of the MCTR Advisory Committee. The grant proposal and report must be submitted to Lisa Godin at, 3-4 weeks prior to the final examination.

Required Courses:

  • CLTR 5357 F40 – Core I: Translational Research I
  • CLTR 5020-F40 – Core II: Statistical Methods in Healthcare
  • CLTR 5359 F40 – Core III: Translational Research III
  • CLTR 5407-F40 Clinical and Translational Research Practicum

Elective Courses:

  • CLTR 5360: Critical Issues Involving Science Publication: The Scientific Review
  • CLTR 5099: Independent Study
  • PUBH 5497-F45: Epidemiology of Substance Use Disorders and Psychiatric Co-morbidities
  • PUBH 5497-F44: Introduction to Community Health Issues and Research
  • PUBH 5431-F40: Public Health Research Methods
  • MEDS 6498: Special Topics in Bioinformatics and Computational Biology
  • MEDS 5309: Molecular Basis of Disease
  • MEDS 5330-F40: Immunobiology II
Program Duration

All work must be completed within four years of the beginning of study which is defined as the beginning date of the earliest course, wherever taken, listed on the approved Masters Plan of Study. Since the three core courses in clinical and translational research must be taken consecutively, the minimum timeframe to complete the program is 18 months. Therefore, we currently do NOT accept students who would require an inflexible full-time status (e.g., due to visa issues).

Graduation Requirements

Students must have completed all courses on an approved Plan of Study, submitted final copies of the scientific report and draft grant application required for the final examination, and passed the final examination in order meet the requirements for awarding of the Master of Science degree.

For information on applying for graduation and deadlines, see Steps to a Successful Graduation- Graduate Programs.

Credit Hours

Depending on the student’s background and status in the program, the number of credit hours taken in one year may range from 3 to 21. The course of study is tailored to the individual student.

Program Faculty

There are approximately 54 faculty members who participate in the Master of Clinical and Translational Research program. They are engaged at various levels of teaching courses (approximately three course offerings per year), supervising independent studies or thesis research.

School Session Base

The Graduate School runs on a semester basis. Students may also register for Master’s degree credits during the summer.

Registration Dates

Fall registration begins in September and runs through March. Classes typically begin during the last week of August.

Application Process

To apply to the MCTR program, you must first submit a letter of intent, a copy of your curriculum vitae and two letters of recommendation to Ms. Lisa Godin via email at Applicants are required to also include a letter of commitment from a UConn faculty stating their intention to mentor and serve as your major advisor during your time in the program. International applicants should also include in their letter of intent a statement regarding how they plan to cover tuition costs.  These materials will be reviewed by the MCTR Executive/Advisory Committee. If the Committee views you as a suitable candidate for the program, you will be invited for an interview. If the Committee recommends acceptance after the interview, you will be instructed to submit an application through The Graduate School.

The documents needed to apply to the Master’s degree are as follows:

  1. Application for Admission
  2. Application Processing fee
  3. Residence Affidavit
  4. Official transcript from each college or university attended
  5. Official TOEFL or IELTS score, if applicable
  6. Letters of Recommendation (2 letters of recommendation)
  7. Personal Letter of Application
  8. Test scores if applicable
  9. Letter of Support from prospective major advisor

Certificate Program in Clinical and Translational Research

The certificate program focuses on the preparation of individuals with established, terminal degrees in a health related field (M.D., Ph.D., Pharm.D., D.D.S., or D.M.D.) or enrolled and in good standing in such a terminal degree program. The purpose of the certificate program is to familiarize the student with the approaches and methods of clinical and translational research so that they may better serve the community as researchers, teachers, public health administrators, clinicians, and industry employees competent to carry out the broad health mission of the State of Connecticut. The certificate program is intended for those persons who are unlikely to develop independent research but would benefit from an understanding of how such research is conducted.

Program Requirements

The certificate program will require students to take 9 credits of core coursework. The eligibility criteria for the certificate program are the same as those for the Master’s degree. The certificate program will allow the student to obtain the core competencies in research methods, but without the hands-on experience in mentored research.

The certificate in clinical and translation research is conferred when the 3 core courses (2 in clinical research methods and 1 in basic or intermediate biostatistics) are satisfactorily completed. The certificate will be granted by The Graduate School.

Program Leadership

Program Director
Cato T. Laurencin, M.D., Ph.D.

Associate Director
Howard Tennen, Ph.D.

Executive Committee

Cato T. Laurencin, M.D., Ph.D.

Howard Tennen, Ph.D.

Helen Wu, Ph.D.

Mark D. Litt, Ph.D.

Ruth Lucas, Ph.D., R.N.C., C.L.S., F.A.A.N.

Advisory Committee

Ian C. Michelow, M.D., F.C.Paed

James Grady, Dr.P.H., M.P.H., PSTAT®

Nancy S. Redeker, Ph.D., R.N., F.A.H.A., F.A.A.N.

Contact Information

For questions or more information please contact:

Ms. Lisa Godin
Clinical Research Center
UConn Health
Farmington, CT 06030-3805

Phone: 860-679-4145

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“Explore. Discover. Treat. Cure. Teach. Repeat” are the welcoming words of the [Cato T. Laurencin Institute for Regenerative Engineering] at UConn Health. This simple but profound concept is what I have added to my life. This master’s program has prepared me with the academic and research skills needed to be an independent researcher. I learned advanced techniques, implemented different thinking methods and new approaches to answers questions in science and medicine. I cannot put into words the nurturing and stimulating environment I have been surrounded by. Thanks to Dr. Cato T. Laurencin and [the] team for the unconditional support.
Samrin Habbani Class of 2021