Certification for CRA, which one is better? ACRP or SoCRA?

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Comments (13)

Arif in Brooklyn, New York

33 months ago

The preferred certification depends on what you want in your career. If you'd like to work in the industry (pharm companies/CROs)- pick ACRP's CCRA certification. If you want to work in a university health programs or hospitals, pick SoCRA's CCRP certification. If you do not have any monitoring experience and want to look attractive to employers, try CCRP with your coordinating experience.

I have not seen anyone benefit from post-grad certificate programs. A Master's degree can help you move from CRA into management, but won't help in getting entry level jobs- the work experience means more than the schooling.

NOTE: I don't know about Australia, but in the USA, ACRP and SoCRA certifications are the ONLY legitimate certifications. There are several scams out there that don't require experience, so beware. Never heard of the CRS certification mentioned by Alex.

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Evren in Rotterdam, Netherlands

25 months ago

Hi Arif and Alex
I will be very happy if any of you can answer my question.

I live in Holland and I graduated as research scientist in 2011 but I cannot work as CRA because I do not have any experience or training or certificate of CRA or ICH GCP. Whenever I read a job position I read that CRA training is a must. What do you suggest me to do?

I cehecked other jobs such as regulatory affairs or clinical trial assistant but I did not find anything.

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Evren in Rotterdam, Netherlands

25 months ago

What is the website to get this training? There are hundreds of pages offering this education.

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Mather in Ansonia, Connecticut

25 months ago

The only places I would recommend to get CRA education are:

1. ACRP: acrpnet.org (association of clinical research professionals)
2. SoCRA: SOCRA.org (professional society of clinical research associates)
3. Barnett International : barnettinternational.com
4. For more diverse positions, ensure that the course is certified to use as CEUs for professional organizations!

Evren, since I haven't met any other People from Holland on this forum, I highly suggest that you do some networking and take a current CRA working in Holland out to lunch. Talk to them face to face and have a good conversation about the job over a lunch. This will be the best way for you to learn about what you need to get your career started.

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Evren in Rotterdam, Netherlands

25 months ago

Thank you so much. I appreciate this information. I will try to Network people. Can I also contact you via Linked In? If you also like to add me you can find me as Evren Sener.

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David Chilton in League City, Texas

25 months ago

Arif in Brooklyn, New York said: The preferred certification depends on what you want in your career. If you'd like to work in the industry (pharm companies/CROs)- pick ACRP's CCRA certification. If you want to work in a university health programs or hospitals, pick SoCRA's CCRP certification. If you do not have any monitoring experience and want to look attractive to employers, try CCRP with your coordinating experience.

I have not seen anyone benefit from post-grad certificate programs. A Master's degree can help you move from CRA into management, but won't help in getting entry level jobs- the work experience means more than the schooling.

NOTE: I don't know about Australia, but in the USA, ACRP and SoCRA certifications are the ONLY legitimate certifications. There are several scams out there that don't require experience, so beware. Never heard of the CRS certification mentioned by Alex.

I have heard of other CRA certification programs such as one given by Kriger Research Group. How does this agency size up and is it acceptible in the clinical arena?

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David Chilton in League City, Texas

25 months ago

I have heard of other CRA certification programs such as one given by Kriger Research Group. How does this agency size up and is it acceptible in the clinical arena?

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Violet in Claymont, Delaware

25 months ago

Hi David,

I think it is really important to point out the difference between a Certificate and a Certification. Kriger is a for-profit training company that issues certificates to people that complete their course. ACRP and SOCRA are non-profit professional organizations that are committed to education, training and improving standards in the field. Completing the Kriger course will NOT make you a CCRA- this term is registered and can only be used by those with ACRP. It is also important to note that Kriger does not have NCCA approval (national commission for certifying agencies). Therefore, you do NOT become a certified clinical research associate by completing the Kriger course.

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ArpitC1@hotmail.com

21 months ago

Evren in Rotterdam, Netherlands said: Thank you so much. I appreciate this information. I will try to Network people. Can I also contact you via Linked In? If you also like to add me you can find me as Evren Sener.

Hey Evren,
I was reading this thread on this forum and I was curious to see if you made any progress in breaking into the clinical research field. I started as a CRC with BD in New Jersy. I was just wondering how the clinical research job market is in the Netherlands. If you want you can contact me via linkedin or email me @ ArpitC1@hotmail.com. Hope to hear from you. Good luck.

Best regards,
Arpit Chokshi

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Carlo Nicdao in West Covina, California

6 months ago

What about www.pharmaschool.co ??? I finished their Ultimate CRA Development Certification. Are they good enough for new grads? Because ACRP and SOCRA requires some hours to be eligible to qualify for their certification. I don't have any right now. Any suggestion would be great!

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DC in Vancouver, British Columbia

5 months ago

I have been following this thread and would like to receive additional information.

I hold a Bachelors degree in Chemistry (Hons), Masters degree in Molecular Medical Microbiology and PhD in Microbiology (U.K), and postdoctoral research experience in molecular virology and immunology (NIH, USA). My training is based on GLP. I wish to transition to a career in clinical research with emphasis on designing, planning and managing clinical research, data analysis and management.
What are my chances of being accepted into a CRA program without GCP in ACRP?

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SDV-er in Chicago, Illinois

5 months ago

100% of fresher/new CRAs will not have their ACRP CCRA certification Because it's impossible to get ACRP certification without first having a job as a CRA. Not being certified is EXPECTED of entry level candidates.

Some people will have CCRC or CCRP certifications from their time as a CRC. Others will have taken a GCP course, but I got my first CRA job without one- it's certainly not a necessity.

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Ernie S. in Concord, California

3 months ago

It's hard to get into a CRA job without prior clinical research experience. 2 common ways to get in to clinical research is to start at a lower position first and move up the rank. Two potential options are 1. Clinical Trial Associate (CTA) position at a pharma company, which is a support role in clinical operation department. After 1-2 years in this role, one may move into a Clinical Research Associate (CRA) position. 2. Clinical Research Coordinator (CRC) position at a clinical site (a hospital or a clinic). This will allow one to learn how to run clinical trial at a site. After 1-3 years in this role, one can pursue a CRA role at a pharma company or at a contract research organization (CRO).

After 6 years in bench research in academia, I switched to clinical research due to better career growth potential. What got me that first job in the industry, a Clinical Research Coordinator (CRC) position for the emergency room at a hospital, was that I was willing to work evening and weekend shift. They needed someone to be there to recruit patients in during the time when majority of ER patients would be coming in. It also helped that I had some prior research experience (although it was in bench research and not in clinical research). After 3 years in that 1st CRC role, I learned a lot and used that experience to get into a CRA role at a sponsor company, then progressed from there.

More info about how to get into clinical research can be found at www.clinicalresearchassociatecra.com/
Ernie S.

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