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Graduate Certificate in Clinical Research Administration

Discover Excellence in Clinical Research Leadership

The George Washington University online Clinical Research Administration (CRA) certification will prepare you to be a strategic leader who drives success for their health care and research organizations. The 18-credit-hour graduate certificate program will strengthen your career prospects while developing CRA management skills for diverse professional opportunities.

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Quick Facts


total credits



2 years

average duration

Accreditation and Rankings

  • Fully accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools
  • #63 Best National University*

* The U.S. News & World Report – 2022 Rankings

Program Highlights


The curriculum for this graduate certificate program offers advanced CRA training to students and requires the completion of 15 credit hours in CRA and a 3-credit-hour elective.

All CRA training requirements in the clinical research certificate program are transferable to the MSHS, so students can seamlessly matriculate in the Master’s in Clinical Research program.

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Program Outcomes

Upon completion of the online CRA training program, you’ll be able to:

Who Is the Ideal Student for This Program?

The online CRA graduate certificate program is ideal for working clinical research professionals, or those in a related field, who wish to increase their knowledge of drug development, clinical trial conduct, monitoring, and the business, ethical, and legal perspectives of the clinical research industry.

Career Outlook

Designed to answer the growing need for clinical research jobs and focusing on strategic leadership in the real world, the online CRA certification program offers diversity when it comes to job outlook. The program will prepare you for some of the highest-level positions within clinical research organizations.

Clinical research director positions have an average annual earning potential of $116,7421, and clinical data manager positions have an average annual earning potential of $74,7972. These are just a few of the high-paying and in-demand careers in clinical research that you can pursue with a CRA master’s degree.

Graduates of this clinical research graduate certificate program are prepared to lead health care organizations in the following roles:

  • Clinical operations manager/director
  • Clinical project manager/director
  • Clinical research manager/director
  • Clinical study manager/director
  • Clinical trial manager/director
  • Drug safety manager/director
  • Institutional review board member

Admission Requirements

To apply for this clinical research graduate certificate program, you’ll need:

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Tuition Details

The CRA graduate certificate program at GW consists of 18 credit hours. Please find the cost per credit hour and total estimated program costs here.

Note: Tuition rates are subject to change and additional fees may vary by program. Please call at (844) 386-7323 for more information.

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Meet the Program Director

Joan Butler, EdD

Dr. Joan Butler has over 25 years of experience in drug development and has held executive, project management, regulatory, and clinical research positions within the pharmaceutical industry. Dr. Butler was chosen as the industry project manager representative loaned to FDA’s Office of the Commissioner to aid in implementing the “team-based managed review process” within the Centers for Drugs and Biologics for PDUFA implementation, for which she received special recognition.

Dr. Butler has taught at the George Washington University since 2008 and continues to serve as the director for Clinical Research Administration programs. Dr. Butler has taught several courses within the graduate Clinical Research Administration program and has focused on evaluating and updating the curricula in undergraduate and graduate programs.

Frequently Asked Questions

As you explore an online program at the George Washington University, our dedicated staff is here to support you. If you have a question we don’t cover here, request more information or call 844-386-7323.

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  1. Payscale (2022 January 12). Average Clinical Research Director Salary. Retrieved February 15, 2022, from
  2. Payscale (2022 January 26). Average Clinical Data Manager Salary. Retrieved February 15, 2022, from