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Managing clinical trials

Contributed equally

Received: 1 February 2010

Accepted: 13 July 2010

Published: 13 July 2010

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Archived Comments

  1. Educational opportunities available to Trial and Data Managers

    1 September 2010

    Rachel Breen, University of Liverpool Clinical Trials Research Centre

    I read with interest the article (provisional pdf) regarding Trial Management.
    Managing clinical trials
    Trials 2010, 11:78 doi:10.1186/1745-6215-11-78
    Barbara Farrell, Sara Kenyon, Haleema Shakur.

    However I felt that the article did not provide a balanced review of the educational opportunities available to Trials Managers and Data Managers. The article only mentioned the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine's MSc in Clinical Trials. There are other MSc courses that have been developed to address trial management needs and could be argued to be more specific to the needs of Trial Managers than LSHTM. Examples include the Cranfield MSc and also MSc Clinical Research Administration run by the University of Liverpool, which is conducted completely in an online learning environment and was developed to meet the needs of Trials Managers in particular. This MSc encourages students to undertake research dissertations relevant to the practices of trial management. Typical examples of dissertation projects include: core outcome sets (an agreed standardised minimum set of outcomes that should be measured and reported in all clinical trials of effectiveness in a specific condition), consent issues, data capture, ethics committees in multicentre/multinational studies, non-response bias, study recruitment, trial monitoring, adherence to trial reporting standards and issues of relevance to the pharmaceutical industry or specific clinical areas.
    This MSc is also linked to the activities of the MRC NWHTMR ( in part due to the relevance of the dissertation projects. I would also recommend that interested readers contact the MRC Hub network to pursue trial management research.

    Competing interests

    None declared

Authors’ Affiliations

National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit CTU, University of Oxford
School of Health and Population Sciences, University of Birmingham
Clinical Trials Unit, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine