Clinical Investigation and Translational Science
The Master of Science in Clinical Investigation and Translational Science (MSCI-TS) Degree Program trains clinicians and health care professionals from diverse backgrounds and disciplines in the conduct of clinical investigations. MSCI-TS program applicants must provide proof of a health professional degree (e.g., M.D., D.D.S./D.M.D., or B.S. in nursing and/or allied health) or a B.S./B.A. or M.S. degree with emphasis in a health-related discipline. Students in the MSCI-TS Program must complete a mentored research project over two years while participating in a highly integrated set of didactic courses leading to the MSCI-TS degree.
The goal of this program is to prepare investigators skilled in the conduct of outstanding clinical and translational research in culturally diverse settings.
The MSCI-TS Program has an open application policy and will accept on-line applications for admission at any time.
However, GSBS deadlines (for submission of on-line applications and required documentation) for matriculation in a specific academic semester are listed below.
- Fall Semester*: February 1
- Fall Semester: April 1
- Spring Semester: October 1
*Applications for applicants who will require a student visa (F-1 or J-1) will only be accepted for consideration for matriculation in the Fall semester.
All applicants should have a sufficient educational background in the biological or biomedical sciences prior to admission to the program.
All transcripts from foreign institutions (including GPA) must be evaluated and submitted by a NACES member foreign credentialing evaluation agency.
A grade point average (GPA) no lower than B (3.0 in a 4.0 system) in the last 60 hours of coursework for a B.S./B.A. degree or a GPA of at least a 3.0 for applicants with a M.S. degree.
Scores on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) tests taken more than five (5) years prior to application will not be accepted.
Applicants who have completed a graduate degree or an U.S. equivalent degree as determined by an evaluation from the a NACES member (if awarded from a foreign institution) in a health-related discipline (M.D., D.D.S., R.N., D.V.M., M.S., or Ph.D.) will be exempted from the requirement to complete the GRE.
A minimum score of 84 on the internet version of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or 6.5 on the academic version of the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) for applicants from countries where English is not the native language.
Scores on TOEFL or IELS tests taken more than two years prior to the date of matriculation will not be accepted.
Letters of recommendation (three) attesting to the applicant's readiness for graduate level studies in clinical investigation.
- Residents or fellows in an approved Health Science Center residency or fellowship program are required to submit a letter from the departmental Chair with a statement indicating the availability and approval of release time for the completion of MSCI-TS educational and research activities.
- Similarly, for Health Science Center staff, an authorized supervisor must provide a statement indicating the availability of release time for MSCI-TS educational and research activities.
- Faculty who are not tenured, or will not be tenured prior to completing the MSCI-TS Program, are required to submit a letter from the department Chair with approval signatures of the Dean and the Health Science Center President in accordance with the HOP 3.2.5 Policy.
A personal statement (1-2 pages) that includes a brief description of the applicant’s background, long term research and career goals, and an indication of the basis for application into the MSCI-TS Program including how this program fits into the applicant’s career objectives.
A current curriculum vitae is required.
Applicants requiring a student visa (requires full-time enrollment) are required to obtain a Supervising Professor, Research Supervising Committee (RSC) on or before the application deadline for the Fall semester they are applying for.
Successful completion of the MSCI-TS Program requires the satisfactory completion of all required coursework, completion of a MSCI-TS COGS approved research project, submission of a manuscript to a peer-reviewed publication, and MSCI-TS COGS approval of the student’s manuscript. (Note: The manuscript must be related to the student’s approved research project and approved by the MSCI-TS COGS in order to satisfy the manuscript requirement of the MSCI-TS Program.) A total of thirty (30) semester credit hours (SCH) are required to obtain the MSCI-TS degree.
Coursework. Students must satisfactorily complete all required didactic courses. MSCI-TS elective courses may be taken and counted towards the thirty (30) SCH graduation requirement.
Research Project. A Supervising Professor, Research Supervising Committee (RSC), and written research proposal must be submitted (prior to the one-year anniversary of the student’s acceptance into the MSCI-TS Program) and approved by the MSCI-TS COGS.
Student/Supervising Professor Compact. The Compact Between MSCI-TS Student and Supervising Professor form must be submitted with the student’s initial research proposal packet. The Compact will be reviewed by the student and their supervising professor and submitted with the Student Semi-Annual Evaluation for approval by the MSCI-TS COGS for approval each fall semester.
Semi-Annual Student Evaluation. Students are required to submit a Semi-annual Student Evaluation form each semester while enrolled in the MSCI-TS Program.
Manuscript. Upon satisfactory completion of all required courses, students must submit a manuscript to the MSCI-TS COGS for review for their eligibility of candidacy for the MSCI-TS degree. (Note: Details and requirements are provided in the Manuscript Requirement section of the MSCI-TS Handbook.)
Plan of Study
|TSCI 5070||Responsible Conduct of Research||2|
|TSCI 5071||Patient-Oriented Clinical Research Methods-1||2|
|TSCI 5072||Patient-Oriented Clinical Research Biostatistics-1||2|
|Total Credit Hours:||7.0-18.0|
|TSCI 5073||Integrated Molecular Biology With Patient-Oriented Clinical Research||1|
|TSCI 5074||Data Management, Quality Control And Regulatory Issues||2|
|TSCI 6060||Patient-Oriented Clinical Research Methods-2||2|
|TSCI 6061||Patient-Oriented Clinical Research Biostatistics-2||2|
|Total Credit Hours:||8.0-19.0|
|TSCI 5075||Scientific Communication||2|
|TSCI 5080||Integrating Molecular Biology with Patient-Oriented Clinical Research Practicum||1|
|TSCI 6065||Health Services Research||2|
|Total Credit Hours:||6.0-17.0|
|TSCI 6098||Thesis 1||1-12|
|TSCI 6097||Research 1||1-12|
|Total Credit Hours:||2.0-24.0|
No formal classes should be required during this semester. The research project should be completed and a manuscript prepared and submitted.
- Fundamental knowledge of and practice of ethics in research.
- Competence in principles of research design/methods and data management/analysis.
- Communicate research effectively in written and verbal communication.
- Competence in research literature review and interpretation.
- Conduct mentored research and submit results for publication.
Program Specific Policies for Student Research Projects
A Supervising Professor, Research Supervising Committee (RSC), and written research proposal must be approved by the MSCI-TS COGS before a student can enroll in TSCI 6097 Research (Mentored Research in Clinical Investigation).
Any changes to a student’s Supervising Professor, RSC, and written research proposal must be approved by the MSCI-TS COGS.
MSCI-TS students with an approved research project are required to prepare a semi-annual written report of progress for consideration by their RSC prior to the fall (August 31st) and spring (February 28th) semester deadlines.
Program Specific Policies for Laptop Computers
Students are required to have a laptop computer that can connect to and operate over a wireless network.
- Microsoft Office Suite (A personal copy of the latest version can be purchased at the Health Science Center bookstore at student pricing with a student ID)
- Stata/IC (latest version required for TSCI 5072 Patient-Oriented Clinical Research Biostatistics-1)
Laptops with an Apple based Operating System must be able to also operate using a Windows based Operating System.
TSCI 5070. Responsible Conduct of Research. 2 Credit Hours.
This interdisciplinary course is designed to train participants in the responsible conduct of patient-oriented clinical research. Students will have the opportunity to learn to and, by the end of the course, be required to: (1) delineate a history of hallmark abuses of humans enrolled in clinical research; (2) describe the evolution of national and international codes and regulations guiding inclusion of human subjects in clinical investigations; (3) list the elements of informed consent and describe procedures and precautions for enrolling special populations into clinical investigation; (4) write a consent form in understandable language; (5) recognize different forms of scientific misconduct; (6) describe the role and processes of a peer review board to judge violations in research ethics; (7) develop strategies for self-assessment and validation of scientific objectivity in one's own research; and (8) recognize the ethical responsibilities and consequences of whistle blowing.
TSCI 5071. Patient-Oriented Clinical Research Methods-1. 2 Credit Hours.
This interdisciplinary course is the first in a two-semester sequence designed to train participants in the conduct of patient-oriented clinical research. Students will have the opportunity to learn to and, by the end of the course, be required to: (1) define a research question; (2) effectively conduct a systematic review of the scientific literature; (3) design strategies for recruitment into a study; (4) delineate strategies for minimizing bias in cross-sectional and retrospective studies; and (5) read and interpret research reports of cross-sectional and case-control investigations.
TSCI 5072. Patient-Oriented Clinical Research Biostatistics-1. 2 Credit Hours.
This interdisciplinary course is the first in a two-semester sequence designed to train participants in the analysis and biostatistics of patient-oriented clinical research. Students will have the opportunity to learn to and, by the end of the course, be required to: (1) identify and summarize different categories of data; (2) set up and perform tests of hypotheses; (3) estimate sample sizes for survey and case-control studies; and (4) use statistical software packages to enter, summarize, graph, visualize, and analyze data.
TSCI 5073. Integrated Molecular Biology With Patient-Oriented Clinical Research. 1 Credit Hour.
This interdisciplinary course is designed to train participants on integrating molecular biology methods into patient-oriented clinical research. Students will have the opportunity to learn to: (1) appropriately use molecular terms in clinical investigation; (2) describe the events involved in protein synthesis; (3) describe the principles involved in molecular techniques (e.g., polymerase chain reactions, southern blots); (4) identify the appropriate specimens, collection, and handling requirements for each molecular technique; (5) identify and correct common sources of error in performing molecular techniques; (6) cite examples of clinical applications of molecular techniques in clinical medicine; and (7) apply molecular techniques in the laboratory to specific clinical problems.
TSCI 5074. Data Management, Quality Control And Regulatory Issues. 2 Credit Hours.
This interdisciplinary course is designed to train participants in the necessary data management and quality control procedures required for the conduct of patient-oriented clinical research. It consists of three segments: (1.) introduction to data management principles and standard practices; (2) development of the student's own mentored research; and (3) introduction to bioinformatics.
TSCI 5075. Scientific Communication. 2 Credit Hours.
This interdisciplinary course is designed to train participants to write effectively in all aspects of conducting patient-oriented clinical research. Students will have the opportunity to learn to and, by the end of the course, be required to: (1) recognize and avoid errors in grammar, punctuation, and usage that are common in scientific writing; (2) construct units of writing whose structure, style, and logical continuity allows instant and clear comprehension; (3) construct concise, informative titles; (4) develop clear, comprehensive, abstracts for papers and grant proposals; (5) construct complete, well-rationalized sets of specific aims for grant proposals; and (6) effectively apply the 4-Point Rule (What is the question? How did we approach it? What happened? What does it mean?) to all forms of scientific writing.
TSCI 5080. Integrating Molecular Biology with Patient-Oriented Clinical Research Practicum. 1 Credit Hour.
This is the required practicum to TSCI 5073. This practicum is designed to provide the opportunity for highly individualized research activities for integrating molecular biology methods into patient-oriented clinical research.
TSCI 6060. Patient-Oriented Clinical Research Methods-2. 2 Credit Hours.
This interdisciplinary course is the second in a two-semester sequence designed to train participants in the conduct of patient-oriented clinical research. Students will have the opportunity to learn to and, by the end of the course be required to: (1) define criteria for inferring causation from observational studies; (2) design strategies for subject retention in a prospective study; (3) design strategies for monitoring progress in a randomized control trial; (4) delineate strategies for minimizing bias in cohort studies and randomized control trials; (5) compare and contrast the uses, strengths, and weaknesses of different clinical trial designs; (6) read and interpret research reports of cohort studies and randomized control trials; and (7) describe the steps in conducting a meta-analysis.
Prerequisites: TSCI 5071.
TSCI 6061. Patient-Oriented Clinical Research Biostatistics-2. 2 Credit Hours.
This interdisciplinary course is the second in a two-semester sequence designed to train participants in the biostatistical analysis and patient-oriented clinical research. Students will have the opportunity to learn to and, by the end of the course, be required to: (1) perform a two-way analysis of variance and explain the results; (2) perform survival analysis; (3) compare and contrast the purpose and characteristics of different forms of interventional trials; and (4) plan the sample size, analysis, and stopping rules of a randomized clinical trial.
Prerequisites: TSCI 5072.
TSCI 6065. Health Services Research. 2 Credit Hours.
This course focuses on concepts and methods used in research focusing on health care quality, utilization, access, and safety. The seminar will utilize skills-based learning, small group activities, and outside assignments. By the end of the course, candidates will be required to: (1) Articulate underlying core concepts; (2) Describe basic methods used in health services research; (3) Identify relevant databases and data sources for health services research; (4) Critically appraise and interpret published reports of health services research; (5) Discuss current issues in HSR; (6) Understand how to incorporate health services concepts, methods, or tools into current research.
Prerequisites: TSCI 5071 and TSCI 6060.
TSCI 6097. Research. 1-12 Credit Hours.
The Research Course is set up for the student to conduct their Mentored Research Project with their supervising professor. This time is to be spent directly working on the project and includes, but is not limited to, writing consent forms, collecting data, analyzing data, and preparing a manuscript. After MSCI-TS COGS approval of the research project, students take three semester credit hours of research during each semester of the Master of Science in Clinical Investigation and Translational Science Degree Program.
TSCI 6098. Thesis. 1-12 Credit Hours.
An MSCI-TS Program Program student is required to enroll in Thesis the semester they submit their manuscript for approval by the MSCI-TS COGS. The 1.0 semester credit hour is required to graduate from the MSCI-TS Program.