Formal Coursework Options
We strongly recommend that all fellows pursuing a career in patient-oriented research obtain formal training in biostatistics, epidemiology, and study design.
There are several ways to obtain such training. The recommended way is to obtain a Masters of Public Health (MPH) degree form the Harvard School of Public Health. Our training program offers full tuition for two qualified fellows each year to matriculate through the Masters of Public Health (MPH) Degree Program at the Harvard School of Public Health. This can be done on a part-time basis, fulfilling half the requirements in the first year of research training (second year of fellowship), and the remainder in the second year of research (third year of fellowship).
Acceptance into the MPH degree path is a competitive process available only to applicants on our physician-scientist track. Factors evaluated in the acceptance to the MPH program are: the qualities of the investigator, the mentor, and the research proposal.
There are other fellowship programs on campus that can provide funds for matriculation through a Master’s degree:
The Clinical Investigator Training Program is offered as a cooperative effort by Harvard Medical School, the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Pfizer Inc., and Merck and Company, Inc. The Scholars in Clinical Science Program is a K30 grant funded by the NIH and offered by Harvard Medical School. Matriculation into each of programs is competitive, and tuition is covered by the cost of the sponsoring program. Students completing either program are awarded Masters of Medical Science degrees from Harvard Medical School. Medical Research Investigator Training (MeRIT) is offered through the Harvard Catalyst Program and Bioinformatics training is available through the Boston-area Biomedical Informatics Research Training Program. We will support your application to any of these programs if they support the career path that you would like to pursue.
Another other way to obtain formal coursework is to take an intensive 7-week Summer Program in Clinical Effectiveness offered by the Harvard School of Public Health School. This short course covers basic statistics, epidemiology and study design. Although participation in the Summer Program in Clinical Effectiveness does not lead to a degree, credit from this course work may be applied to an MPH if the fellow is subsequently accepted and matriculates into the Masters Program.
Our fellowship program offers $4500 towards the total tuition fee of about $12,000 for completion of the Summer Program in Clinical Effectiveness. The balance of the tuition can be raised by a fellow and their research mentor. Additional funding may be available through the Division under exceptional circumstances for individual fellows.
Fellows accepted to the Clinical-Innovator track are provided with tuition funds to complete the Summer Program in Clinical Effectiveness. Fellows not interested in participating in the Summer Program in Clinical Effectiveness may choose to spend up to the amount of tuition for this program to complete supplemental coursework, selected in conjunction with their research/project mentor. Fellows may also choose to audit courses at Harvard Medical School, School of Public Health, or on the Undergraduate or Graduate campuses.
Clinician-Innovator trainees may participate in one of the didactic longitudinal programs available on the Longwood Medical campus, including the Rabkin Fellowship in Medical Education, offered through the Shapiro Institute for Education and Research. Other opportunities include the Macy Institute at Harvard Medical School, and the Harvard Medical School Academy Center for Teaching and Learning.