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Doctor of Philosophy in Clinical and Translational Science

Designed to train investigators to re-engineer the ways in which basic scientific discoveries are translated to improve health and health care

The Institute for Clinical Research Education at the University of Pittsburgh has designed the PhD Program in Clinical and Translational Science to train researchers in this emerging field that aims to close the gap between basic science and clinical research. This rigorous and advanced training program is intended primarily for clinicians, and aims to substantially enhance the capabilities of scientists to conduct high-quality clinical and translational research.


  1. Highly Multidisciplinary, Collaborative Environment

    The core curriculum provides trainees with the basic set of skills that are required by clinical investigators in all fields of interest. These skills include an understanding of research design, epidemiologic methods, biostatistics, study and survey design, measurement of outcomes, and ethical and regulatory principles of research involving human subjects. While taking courses, PhD students will have unparalleled access to top research faculty and engage in the extensive research infrastructure of the ICRE.

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  3. Individualized Training

    Students pursuing the PhD in Clinical and Translational Science are able to choose the courses that are the most valuable for their specific research interests. Over 50% of the credits earned for the PhD are chosen by the student with guidance from their academic advisor and research mentor.

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  5. Built for Clinicians

    Our courses are designed with the busy clinician schedule in mind. Instead of the traditional, 15-week-long graduate course, our courses are 1 or 2 months in duration. Additionally, several of our courses are now offered online and in a hybrid format. We strive to keep our programs practical, flexible, and convenient, while maintaining the rigor you’d expect from a renowned research university like the University of Pittsburgh.

For information about the curriculum, program milestones, and tuition, see the Program Details page.

"The PhD in CTS program made me a more confident and independent researcher. The coursework is directly related to the work of a clinician scientist and considerably improved my skill sets in quantitative and qualitative methodologies. I gained skills in grant writing, management, leadership, and mentorship, and established a strong network of mentors who have invested their time and energy in my career."

- Amber L. Hill, MSPH, PhD
University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine,
Class of 2021


Galen E. Switzer, PhD

Director of PhD Program in Clinical and Translational Science

Jacquelin Rankine MD, PhD

Assistant Director of PhD Program in Clinical and Translational Science

Institute for Clinical Research Education
200 Meyran Avenue, Suite 300
Pittsburgh, PA 15213

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