Research and Scholarship Certificate Program
The ACCP Academy Research and Scholarship Certificate Program is an educational program aimed at developing basic clinical research and scholarly abilities. This program is an extension of the previous “Research Training Curriculum” developed by ACCP in the late 1990s. The program’s curriculum is not intended to serve as a substitute for more intensive education and training such as postdoctoral research fellowships or graduate degrees that are part of an institutional NIH Clinical and Translational Science Award.
The primary target audience for this program is residency-trained clinical pharmacists who practice in a setting where involvement in research and scholarly activity is an expectation of their position. Although most of these clinical pharmacists will hold clinical faculty appointments with a school or college of pharmacy, individuals working in hospitals, community pharmacies, managed care organizations, or other settings may also be involved in research and scholarship.
With increased student enrollments and enhanced emphasis on experiential education, many schools and colleges of pharmacy are experiencing difficulty identifying appropriately educated and trained candidates for clinical faculty positions. With fewer clinical pharmacists completing postdoctoral research training, the development of research and/or publication skills is needed by many new clinical pharmacy educators. Because clinically trained pharmacists enter the Academy with a wide range of backgrounds and skills, the program commences with a required “primer” that allows participants to become familiar with key foundational concepts and essential information that will serve as a useful bridge to the curriculum’s required courses. The ACCP Research and Scholarship Program is an effort to develop the research skills of clinical pharmacists to advance the profession of pharmacy.
Program Philosophy and Format
The core mission of ACCP is to advance patient health and quality of life by helping clinical pharmacists expand the frontiers of their practice and research (Pharmacotherapy 2007;27:312–24). A goal of the ACCP Research Institute and ACCP is to advance clinical pharmacy and pharmacotherapy through support and promotion of research and research training. The ACCP Research Program is designed to contribute to this mission. Furthermore, the College believes that one of pharmacy’s societal responsibilities is to generate and disseminate new knowledge about pharmacotherapy. This responsibility includes the conduct of translational and clinical research and the translation of research results into practice-based applications.
The program integrates research theory with practical applications while involving the participant in scholarly work early in the curriculum. In validated adult learning theory, learning occurs within a logical, familiar context and builds on experience. Skills develop more quickly through critical thinking and problem solving when the learning parallels real-world experience. Attendees will be challenged to explore individual professional research and scholarly activity goals in order to make the experience as relevant as possible within their respective professional contexts.
Each attendee will be required to identify a research or scholarly project to pursue across the Academy curriculum. This may be an investigator-initiated study, working as a member of a collaborative research team, or collaborating with an established clinical research unit (such as a clinical research center). Research projects may be clinical, translational, or health services oriented, or they may be outcomes-based educational or behavioral science studies.
One-on-one mentoring is among the most effective strategies to develop the knowledge, skills, attitudes, and values of a researcher-scholar. The value of such mentoring is optimized when the mentor can provide regular feedback regarding an individual’s performance. Therefore, each participant in the Researcher and Scholarship Program will be asked to identify a researcher-scholar mentor (preferably from his or her institution, if possible) with whom he or she will meet throughout the time he or she is enrolled in the Academy program. The mentor is expected to assist each participant in achieving program outcomes. It is anticipated that mentors will meet regularly with their protégés and provide opportunities for the protégé to observe and (if feasible) participate in the mentor’s research and scholarly activity. When necessary, program faculty will assist participants in identifying an appropriate mentor.
A certificate of completion will be awarded on completion of 28 contact hours: the Research Primer (6 hours), three required modules (3 x 4 hours), and five elective modules (5 x 2 hours). Attendees will also be required to complete designated online portfolio assignments. ACCP will track progress toward certificate completion for each attendee. All programming will be live and offered in association with the ACCP Spring Practice and Research Forum and the ACCP Annual Meeting. The design of the curriculum allows participants to complete the certificate requirements in 2 years if they attend both the ACCP Spring Forum and Annual Meeting for 2 consecutive years or in 3 years by attending only one or two meetings annually.
- Browner WS. Publishing and Presenting Clinical Research, 3rd Ed. Philadelphia: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins, 2012.
- Fletcher RW and Fletcher SW. Clinical Epidemiology: The Essentials, 4th Ed. Philadelphia: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins, 2005.
- Glantz SA, ed. Primer of Biostatistics, 7th ed. New York: McGraw Hill, 2012.
- Reif-Lehrer L. Grant Application Writer’s Handbook, 4th ed. Boston: Jones and Bartlett, 2005.
- Russell, S. W., and David C. Morrison. The Grant Application Writer's Workbook: National Institutes of Health. [Los Olivos, Calif.]: Grant Writers' Seminars and Workshops, LLC, 2010
To purchase required and recommended textbooks, visit the ACCP Bookstore.
Prerequisite Module: Research Primer
This module is designed to provide participants with an introduction to fundamental research concepts. Participants will explore the various roles, responsibilities, and venues in which a new researcher may develop a research focus as well as potential working relationships with established researchers. The module will discuss the mentor-protégé interaction and ways in which to maximize the benefits of such a relationship throughout a career. This 6-hour module is a mandatory prerequisite for the program's remaining required modules. Therefore, the primer must be taken first to receive credit for any subsequent required module. An introductory workshop on developing a research question will be conducted as part of the primer. This workshop is designed to stimulate the development of a longitudinal research project idea by each participant. Program enrollees will be asked to revisit, build on, and revise this project idea throughout the Academy program. Participants are asked to read Chapters 1 and 2 of "Designing Clinical Research" prior to attending the Research Primer.
Required Module 1: Basics of Clinical Research
This module builds on the foundational concepts presented in the Research Primer. Attendees will be introduced to general principles and issues of clinical, health services, or educational research design. In this session, attendees will classify studies, discuss relative advantages and disadvantages of study designs, and dissect the research proposal into its basic components. Participants will be provided with strategies to locate intramural and extramural sources of funding. In addition, faculty will offer practical advice for the novice researcher. As much as possible, attendees will be asked to refer to their own project ideas as a platform for discussion and exploration.
Required Module 2: Statistical Issues
Attendees will develop competencies in research question development and analysis. This will be accomplished through developing a key understanding of research methods relevant to attendees’ particular areas of research. Attendees will then apply these methods to their own individual project.
Required Module 3: Regulatory/Ethical Issues
This course addresses operational and ethical issues associated with developing and directing clinical research. Perspectives on human subject protection as well as current concepts/perspectives related to informed consent, HIPAA, IRBs, and cultural competency will be provided. The session will integrate case studies focusing on ethical, legal, and social issues. Budget management, quality control processes, and appropriate data management to ensure data integrity will be discussed. Author responsibilities, managing misconduct allegations, and navigating the IRB will also be addressed.
Each elective module, consisting of 2 contact hours of instruction, will be embedded in the ACCP Spring Forums and Annual Meetings. Designed to meet the widely varied needs of program participants, these electives will focus on specific areas of research and scholarship not covered in depth by the required modules. Some electives will focus on a contemporary research approach or research text. Other electives will address the requirements of specific research or scholarly activity processes/skills (e.g., the clinical scientist, the research coordinator, scientific writing, manuscript preparation).
In addition to completing the 18 hours of required modules and 10 hours of elective modules, each participant must assemble a portfolio containing a research or scholarly project, assignments from live courses, and mentor assessments. Portfolio development should begin upon enrollment in the Academy.
Enrollment and Program Costs
To enroll in the ACCP Academy Research and Scholarship Certificate Program, apply online or download program application form. Expenses for ACCP Academy certificate programs have been established with today's institutional budgets in mind. A one-time application fee of $150 (to offset expenses for online portfolio maintenance) will be charged upon enrollment in the certificate program.
Questions? Visit the FAQs page or contact Kathy Lemons or Zangi Miti.