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Clinical Research (MSc)

Course Description

About the course

The MSc Clinical Research is designed to recruit students who wish to learn about research methods and evidence based practice in a clinical setting and to develop a career in clinical academia or research with a potential to embark on further training such as a doctoral programme. Students will receive training in qualitative and quantitative research methods to develop research competency, research skills and critical judgment in an area of clinical practice.

The programme is well suited for qualified Doctors, Nurses, Midwives, Allied Health Care Professionals, Dentists, Pharmacists, Health Science Professionals or Clinical Psychologists who have experience in a clinical setting.

This exciting and stimulating MSc Clinical Research is delivered by the established Centre for Research in Primary and Community Care (CRIPACC) within the School of Health and Social Work at the University of Hertfordshire. CRIPACC is a dedicated, enthusiastic and friendly research centre with a national and international reputation, offering an excellent opportunity to learn.

See the website http://www.herts.ac.uk/courses/clinical-research-msc

Aims of the MSc Clinical Research

- Develop a student's academic research career by advancing their research and leadership skills in a clinical area and provide outstanding preparation for future research training, including progression to doctoral studies.

- Equip the student with a core set of skills and knowledge of relevant theory and research methodologies in clinical research as well as a thorough understanding of the research process from planning, conducting, analysing and disseminating, to develop them into an independent researcher in their clinical setting.

- Enhance skills and knowledge that are transferable across a diversity of healthcare settings at an individual and organisational level, such as critical thinking, project management, use of IT and problem solving skills.

- Provide a supportive and stimulating blended learning environment, including small group teaching, Master classes, and a variety of e-learning teaching methods, and delivered by experienced and dedicated researchers in the internationally renowned research centre.

Why choose this course?

- Highly rated by past students as a positive experience and well organised course. Evidence Based Practice and Patient and Public Involvement in Research modules were particularly popular.

- Experienced multi-disciplinary lecturers with established track records in health-related research such as Adolescent, Child and Family Health; Older People’s Health and Complex Conditions; Food and Public Health; Patient Experience and Public Involvement; and Evidence Based Practice.

- Furthering the student’s academic career through personalised mentorship in line with the HEE/NIHR integrated academic career pathway. CRIPACC has a strong track record of mentoring having led the NIHR/CNO Health Research Training Fellow mentorship scheme and the local scheme developed in response to the Athena Swan Charter.

- Excellent opportunities to disseminate the student’s work through publication and presentation at conferences.

- A unique Clinical Research Dissertation where the student produces a ready-to-use research grant application for application in their clinical setting or a doctoral fellowship.

- In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework, the School of Health and Social Work of which CRIPACC was a major contributor demonstrated an outcome of 82% of research quality being rated as 3* and 4*, with an impact and environment outcome of 100% at 3* and 4*.

- Two state-of-the-art Learning Resources Centres open 24/7 to meet modern integrated learning resources and services.

- Attainment a Good Clinical Practice Certificate and completion of the NHS Leadership “Edward Jenner” online programme.


On completion of the course, students will be well placed to carry out primary research, promote evidence-based practice by delivering and integrating research findings into their clinical practice and thereby improving health outcomes in their clinical settings. Students will be confident in publishing papers and presenting for conferences. Students will be prepared to apply for research grant funding and/or furthering their clinical academic career by pursuing a Doctorate degree.

Teaching methods

The programme is taught through a combination of innovative lectures, seminars, small group teaching, face-to-face tutorials, workshops, online teaching and individual supervision. Training is flexible and teaching is provided in blocks of two full days, which allows students to organise their time effectively to manage the demands of clinical practice and academic study.

Different assessment methods are used, including coursework and practicals. Coursework includes essays, short pieces of writing work, blogs, critical review, whereas practicals include oral presentations.

In addition, the University has an excellent reputation in blended learning and is supported by the Learning and Teaching Innovation Centre (LTIC). The MSc programme team collaborate with the LTIC and benefit from their expertise in incorporating effective learning, teaching and assessment methods into their modules.

The course is supported by a dedicated Information Manager and the two state-of-the-art Learning Resource Centres, which provide information, computing, study and coursework support. A versatile online inter-active learning environment, StudyNet, allows every student to access information relevant to their studies online through a web browser both on and off campus available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Programme Modules, Mode of Study and Awards

The MSc Clinical Research consists of six compulsory modules. As well as these modules, the students will have the opportunity to acquire their Good Clinical Practice certificate and complete the NHS Leadership “Edward Jenner” online programme during their studies.

The MSc Clinical Research is offered on a one year full-time basis or on a part-time basis from two years to a maximum of five years. Individual modules can also be taken.

The programme leads to the following awards:
- MSc Clinical Research – 180 credits required to be passed at level 7 and includes all six modules
- Postgraduate Diploma in Research Methodologies (Clinical Research) - 120 credits required to be passed at level 7 and includes all the modules, except the Clinical Research Dissertation module
- Postgraduate Certificate in Research Methodologies (Clinical Research) - 60 credits required to be passed at level 7 and includes the module Evidence Based Practice and either Qualitative Research Methods or Quantitative Research Methods modules

Find out how to apply here http://www.herts.ac.uk/courses/clinical-research-msc#how-to-apply

Find information on Scholarships here http://www.herts.ac.uk/apply/fees-and-funding/scholarships/postgraduate

Visit the Clinical Research (MSc) page on the University of Hertfordshire website for more details!

Entry Requirements

Bachelor’s degree, normally a 2:1 honours in a subject related to health (or equivalent). Currently working in a clinical setting, with at least one year full-time (or part-time equivalent) post-registration experience. Overseas students will need to satisfy the University's English Language requirements of IELTS 6.5 or above (or equivalent). Students will also be expected to have a formal letter of support from their current employer.

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Recipient: University of Hertfordshire
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