HOW TO GET THE EXPERIENCE IF NOBODY ACCEPT ENTRY LEVELS

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Chris R in Phoenix, Arizona

83 months ago

C in Oakland, California said: My degree was in english - and I'm now a Clinical Project Manager at a MAJOR Bay Area pharma, proving you don't have to have a science degree to break into the CR field.

I suggest starting from the ground up - don't try to shoot for the moon. You will serve yourself better by building a foundation of experience.

If you can, start in data management or as a study coordinator (again - a science degree helps, but it not required)

Hope that helps! Good luck!

Where would you suggest looking to get some clinical experience? And would you mind telling me what an average day is like for a CRA?

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USN in Toronto, Ontario

83 months ago

Has your degree been accepted in USA? First start by getting that evaluated by WES.Once that is done, see the gaps you may have and try to fill that by taking some courses if you have the money. If not then a job-even part time is a good idea, and then think about where you want to go from there.

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N in Canton, Michigan

83 months ago

USN in Toronto, Ontario said: Has your degree been accepted in USA? First start by getting that evaluated by WES.Once that is done, see the gaps you may have and try to fill that by taking some courses if you have the money. If not then a job-even part time is a good idea, and then think about where you want to go from there.

Yes i have sent my degree for evaluation to ECE m waiting for it...Then i will think of completing my credits.I was thinking of starting with a basic job for expereince in biotech field but i dnt knw whether to start in a hospital(diaganostic centre) or biotech company....

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N in Canton, Michigan

83 months ago

KC in Spring City, Pennsylvania said: Michigan State University has a great online course that gives GCP training. Employers like seeing up to date training on job duties, procedures, regs, etc of a CRA. Here's the website nursing.msu.edu/certcources.asp

It's something like a 30 hour course and the lecturer is really good. They offer job search help, too.

Hey thanx for the help..how about Kriger research institute is that a good option..

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TY in Houston, Texas

83 months ago

David Chilton in League City, Texas said: Hi Lee,
I got my CRA certification from Kriger Research International. It took about 3 months to complete. The nice thing about this program is that when you complete the course work you are given 4 clinical trial projects to work on. These are active on going clinical trials so the experience you gain from your involvememt counts as actual work exoerinece equivent to ~6 months. This is great because you can put this on your resume. Also, Kriger has a great resume design department that will help you highlight your experiences that are of value to the CRA field, thus making you more marketable. In addition, the final test you take after the course work and conclusion of the project can be taken more than once if you do not pass the first time. The content of the CRA program is identical to the information given in other CRA certification programs like the SOCRA, ACRP and others. After taking the certification course I have had a lot of companies calling me for interviews. I have not landed a position yet but in time that will change. As a matter fo fact, next week I will be interiveiwing for 3 spots with hiring managers. I believe this field is so under employed that in time anyone who has the right acedemic back ground augmented with CRA certification will get a nice position in due time. Just keep at and chances are a CRA postion will come your way. Stay positive!!
all the best
David C. MSc. CCRA

I have been contemplating taking that exact course from Kriger, so it is encouraging to hear you give positive feed-back about it. Thank you! I know breaking into the field will be tough, but I am willing to work hard at it. Do you know of any companies that are hiring for Data coordinators? It would be ideal if I could work as a Data Coordinator while I finish the Kriger program as I am located in Houston, TX.

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TY in Houston, Texas

83 months ago

I can not tell you how enthusiastic I am now. Thank so much for your help, I really appreciate your time and advise. Good luck on your interviews!

Tasha

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USN in Toronto, Ontario

83 months ago

If you can get into a hospital setting that has some trials going on ...then buddy you will open your gateway into the CRA field.
Best of luck.

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Urmila in Toronto, Ontario

83 months ago

Kriger is a good option for doing the online course ad it is cheaper than in class. Plus you get to study at your own speed. Thre are instructors online to help you. I say go for it.
Best of luck

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Urmila in Toronto, Ontario

83 months ago

Hi there-Kriger is not an unknown company
There are numerous companies-both USA and Canada-that have hired Kriger graduates.

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Urmila in Toronto, Ontario

83 months ago

Tasha and David
Look at the comments made by Irina.She recently registered with Kriger and got a rebate of 400.
One more person-Rafi is also thinking of joining.
Hope this helps

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N in Canton, Michigan

83 months ago

Thanx alot everyone...ur comments encourages me to get into this field...i appretiate that...

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Chris R in Phoenix, Arizona

83 months ago

Urmila in Toronto, Ontario said: Kriger is a good option for doing the online course ad it is cheaper than in class. Plus you get to study at your own speed. Thre are instructors online to help you. I say go for it.
Best of luck

What sort of material is covered in the Kriger course? How much of a commitment time-wise is it?

Thanks!

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Ral in Toronto, Ontario

83 months ago

Hi Guys,

It seems like this is an advertisement section for Kriger.. Well, I dont have anything against Kriger but please do consider and comment about other universities and colleges also in US,UK,Europe and Canada..I personally know four people who have done courses with Kriger and are without jobs where as full-time graduates from Seneca and Humber have 100% placements..All I mean/ask is to guide people to show the best way..

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Urmila in Toronto, Ontario

83 months ago

Hi all,
Just saw Rals' comment. Its funny that he should know four Kriger graduates who haven't found a job, whereas I know more than 4 Kriger graduates who all are well placed. I am not a Kriger employee but its my friends who are graduates from this institute. Coming to Canada as a new immigrant can be hard with regards to tuition fees and Kriger seems a good option due to its online availability.Seneca doesnt have the same course coverage,and yes Humber is good but not online.And of course it all depends upon the individual.
There is no competition as to which place is good or bad-all are good if the material is covered and you learn what is needed to be learnt.

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Rafael G. Gaitan in Littleton, Colorado

83 months ago

Thank you very much for your comment. I have been thinking in the same way about Krieger(?). Thanks for your information about the other places. That really helps.

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Urmila in Toronto, Ontario

83 months ago

Hello forum members,

Another well known school is the Michener Institute in Toronto. You can log onto their site and see what they offer.Some of my friends have done courses-Lab Tech-from there but they also offer a 15 month CRA course online.You can compare the cost with other online courses.As such they do not have any placement but they sure are expensive.Best of luck to those who wanted other options.

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slumnur in Denver, Colorado

83 months ago

Hello all - I have been reading all of your posts and am very thankful for all of the insight you all have provided.

Does anyone have an idea of how much a Clinical Research Assistant makes? Just to point out, it is not an Associate position, but the assistant position?

I tried to do a salary.com search to see, but it just comes back with an Associate.

Many thanks!

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Name change in Frisco, Texas

83 months ago

RAFAEL GOMEZ GAITAN in Littleton, Colorado said: I did a Clinical Research Associate couse on line last March. In the partial tests I got 91%, 96% and 94%. In the final Mastery test I got 94%. I have been trying to get an entry level job since then. Everybody requires one or 2 years experience. How can I get the experience if nobody gives the chance to beginners?

This is common in virtually every industry - period. Eventually you can get in. Sometimes through just getting "a" job with a desired company you'll be able to transfer within.

I do see many, many people on indeed who have paid sums of money to various schools. Many of them tell me that the course wasn't accredited.

The Value of the course you passed will also be based on were you took the class.
In a general example: Harvard carries tons more weight than the local community college.

I don't know who you took the class from but you might keep this in mind for the future as it will help with employment.

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Jobs in Frisco, Texas

83 months ago

The general rule is that the titles are often bigger at smaller companies. This helps a lot in moving faster up the ladder to your desired job position.

There are 2 routes that I wish I'd been told in my early years of work.

1. Take a job at a well known national company. They usually have tons of in-house extra training & multiple opportunities. They may not be the best pay but they carry heavy weight on the future resume'.

2. Then work for a fast growing mid-size company with a higher title and lots of new jobs being added. You get in the door and then transfer to the new jobs as they open up..... or you use the higher title to move to your future bigger company in the job you really want.

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Linda

83 months ago

Hi everyone.

I am downsized in clinical research as director of clinical research. I am having a hard time getting interviewed, recruiters saying I only have experience with studies from the wrong end..as a site..not monitor. I have 3 years of experience with hundreds of studies. I had CRA's working for me...I took SOCRA training and have a PhD, and certified medical writer. I am aghast that I am passed over...

Who has a network contact?

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Tara in Gulfport, Mississippi

83 months ago

Hello,
I have been reading these comments and I have found a lot of helpful advice. If someone could tell me the best way to start getting into the research field I would appreciate it. I have a degree in Business. Is there any direction that I should try to go in, in order to become a CRA? I appreciate any help. I am willing to relocate and take some classes if I need to. I would really like to find a training program.
Thank you for any advice

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Urmila in Toronto, Ontario

82 months ago

For CRA you need a science background, but if you are thinking about biopharma industy
I'm sure they need business background for different positions.

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Sig in Mansfield, Texas

82 months ago

I have an mba, bachelor of Science/Business Administration and work currently as a nurse in Fort Worth Texas and would like to make a change in career but there is no one in this area who can offer me job in health care marketing or clinical research associate without having the experience.

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Elaine in Miami, Florida

82 months ago

Sathya Simha in Bangalore, India said: Hi i am currently working as CRA in Bangalore India, for a global CRO , I am interested in doing Masters in Clinical Research in US , please guide me as to what are the universities which offer these courses , are there ant international exchange programs

Awating all your response,
Regards
Sathya[/QUOT

Hello Sathya,

Duke University, in North Carolina, has an on-line MSN degree in Clinical Research Management. George Washington University in Washington, DC also has a Master's degree in Clinical Research. Good Luck.

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Urmila in Toronto, Ontario

82 months ago

Hello Dr Rohit Arora,
If you have an MD degree you should not have a problem in doing clinical rsearch-after all it is the MDs that are usually the PI in clinical research. India has numerous companies that are involved in clinical research. I dont think you want to be a CRA in India but if you are going somewhere else like Europe or the Americas then most probably you have to go through some training.
Best of luck.

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Experienced CRA in Durham, North Carolina

82 months ago

Salary of the position under a CRA, termed a Clinical Trial Assistant, is $45-50K. Benefits at the larger CROs are worth thousands. Bonuses too. Not to mention that after you are promoted to CRA, you can easily be home-based so you can work at home when you are not traveling.

Appying for an assistant position is an excellent way to be trained in Clinical Research and it is a much more useful way to spend your time than taking additional classes and multiple-choice tests (like some on this posting site).

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Praveena in Riverview, Florida

82 months ago

I am doing my masters in Molecular medicine. I am very interested in pursuing my career as clinical research associate. I don't have any experience in the clinical research field. To take the SOCRA and ACRP cerification exam, i need to have atleast 1 yr of experience in the field. I would like to know is there any certification exam websites or associations where i can take the exam without experiece?

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M in SJ, CA

82 months ago

C in Oakland, California said: My degree was in english - and I'm now a Clinical Project Manager at a MAJOR Bay Area pharma, proving you don't have to have a science degree to break into the CR field.

I suggest starting from the ground up - don't try to shoot for the moon. You will serve yourself better by building a foundation of experience.

If you can, start in data management or as a study coordinator (again - a science degree helps, but it not required)

Hope that helps! Good luck!

Hello C,

I was wondering if there are any opportunities to "shadow" a CRA professional and how I could go about this. I am considering this career and would like to see "in person" what the job is like. Did you start as a study coordinator and/or obtain a certificate in CRA? Thank you for your suggestions.

M in San Jose

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FW in NC in Greensboro, North Carolina

82 months ago

Hi C,

Thanks for that great information. I do not have a Science Degree and was wondering where I should start as well? Is a Clinical Study Coordinator the same as a Clinical Research Coordinator? CRAs require a science degree and at least 1 yr. experience, correct? I am having difficulty finding information under Clinical Study Coordinator...do you know of any good sites?

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AP in Harrisonburg, Virginia

82 months ago

I have a MBBS degree from india and a Masters degree in human nutrition from oklahoma state university..had clinical experience in college and have 3 publications to my credit..have been looking for CRA position for almost a year now..but havent got a single call yet..I need a H1 visa..any suggestions about what more should I do...do I need to get another CRA degree just to get interviewed...since I heard people get research jobs even without CRA degree all they have is a green card..do you guys think that is a problem? What more should I do?

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Adriana P in São Paulo, Brazil

82 months ago

Hello, I read all your comments and then I felt that I am not alone in this situation.
I am MD especialized in Ob& Gyn. Iam from Argentina and now Iam living in Brazil. I thought it was a great idea to start a career in clinical research, so I made a course for monitors and cordinators. Now Iam sending resumes wherever I find a possition, but I had only one interview... it is very frustraiting...
I would like to work in the industry or in a CRO.
Somebody can help me or can tell me where to look for jobs in the area?
Thaks,

Adriana

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Bubba in Rockford, Illinois

81 months ago

Check out this site for CRA positions

www.careersinpharmaceutical.com

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Adriana P in São Paulo, Brazil

81 months ago

Bubba in Rockford, Illinois said: Check out this site for CRA positions

www.careersinpharmaceutical.com

Bubba:
Thank you very much!!! The site is grate! The problem is that the possitions are all in USA. But it is very useful because there are a lot of CRO and Companies that I didn't know.
Adriana

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Adriana P in Curitiba, Brazil

81 months ago

Thank you again. And good luck for you!!!!
Adriana

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Arlene Kray in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

81 months ago

We are looking for entry level people at Novum!
crtrainingprogram.novumprs.com
We are interviewing in April

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Alex in Toronto, Ontario

81 months ago

Hi fellas!Mby someone know how to get volunteering position in CRA?Please send me e-mail:alexrubin@rogers.com

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Nitin Bansal in Sydney, Australia

81 months ago

I'm facing the same situation here in sydney.
Just applying n applying but no response frm anyone.
Donnow wat happend to my CVs tht i send thm.

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Jahan K in Ottawa, Ontario

81 months ago

I completely agree with No name in Alberta. I went to a seminar about the Clinical Research Field and the people were spilling lies that this field is so under employed. The fact is that companies dont hire unless you have a Clinical Research Designation in your name and you have experience for two or more years in the field. I wish I could stand up during the seminar and tell them off. I have been applying since September w/o any luck. I am also fed up with the process but I guess there is no way but to continue.

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No name in Edmonton, Alberta

81 months ago

yes, it seems 2 years of experience is the minimum. I also have been in contact with some recruiting agencies in us and canada and I think some companies are honest and really try to help you, while others don't seem to be very serious.

the funny thing is that I receive an e-mail telling me about countless CRA perspectives and that the field is short of people, in less than 6 months they will face a "crisis". after more than 6 months a got the same email. so if there is even a "crisis" because of lack of people, how comes you apply to hundreds of jobs and get nothing?

my impression is that with cra training and experience you have more chances in working as a coordinator in a university than as a cra for a company. good enough, you get some experience and can later apply for a cra position. however, tbere are less jobs and nothing is guaranteed anyway..

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Nitin Bansal in Sydney, Australia

81 months ago

There r plenty of jobs arise everyday for CRA in job sites but all r worthless for us people. I dont know where these all go. U can c lots of articles abt the growing demand & less manpower in this field. but still we people r unemployed.
I could not understand this mystery. can any one ?????

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No name in Edmonton, Alberta

81 months ago

I guess most Clinical Research jobs are obtained via "networking" which is not very honest, in my opinion. It matters "who's your daddy", the rest is less important. I even noticed that sometime they don't even read resumes, just send them directly to garbage!! This is disgusting.

The second thing is about luck, like in anything else.

We have little control over these factors. But what we can do is to keep fighting and to take a more aggressive approach. Don't be afraid to reapply for the same company. Just remain positive and keep applying:)

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David in Los Angeles, California

81 months ago

No name in Edmonton, Alberta said: I guess most Clinical Research jobs are obtained via "networking" which is not very honest, in my opinion. It matters "who's your daddy", the rest is less important. I even noticed that sometime they don't even read resumes, just send them directly to garbage!! This is disgusting.

It's the same with any job--you know someone with a name or standing in the company, and you're practically a shoe-in for the interviews. That's why networking is so important for any field of work. But throwing resumes in the trash without so much as a glance? That really is disgusting.

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Mary in Rotterdam, Netherlands

81 months ago

Hi there! I was hoping somebody could help me out with the following issue..I am currently working as a CRA in the Netherlands, which is really great, but next year (2009)I would really like to start working in New York. This means that I need to find a company who is willing to sponsor me for a H-1 visa. Does anybody know such companies? And how long the whole process of obtaining such a visa will take? Will it be too difficult? Please advice!

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Shivani Shah in Niles, Illinois

81 months ago

Hi,

I am a Biology Student at IIT Chicago looking for Entry Level Position in Clinical Research. I did complete CRA Training Program at Kriger, but still I am not able to end into anything.

About their projects, I am still figuring out how to do them.
It would be grest if anybody could help me with that ?

Is it really difficult to get an Entry Level Position in Clinical Research.

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Chirag Kamdar in Boston, Massachusetts

81 months ago

Shivani Shah in Niles, Illinois said: Hi,
I am a Biology Student at IIT Chicago looking for Entry Level Position in Clinical Research. I did complete CRA Training Program at Kriger, but still I am not able to end into anything.

About their projects, I am still figuring out how to do them.
It would be grest if anybody could help me with that ?

Is it really difficult to get an Entry Level Position in Clinical Research.

It is possible to get a job as CRA. Is everyone on this forum talking about Clinical Research Assistant position or Clinical Research Associate Position ????
well, best thing is to put up a nice resume on career-builder and monster.com and then EDIT that resume EVERY DAY - twice a day. Editing makes a difference a big one. PARAXEL International is a CRO that hires many people. I am not sure about the work environment or intensity of work but I have heard it gets pretty crazy. Although, hours and working in office setting pays off. At the end of the day, be happy to get a job when u get one. Entry level positions are working as clinical research assistants in CRO. I am not too sure about projects but companies like PARAXEL work with many different research companies ...

Good luck and don't give up
bye

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Scott in Tampa, Florida

81 months ago

I am a recruiter. I recruit CRA's and Regional CRA's for major pharaceutical companies. I understand all of your frustrations. Most pharmaceutical companies require experience. The best way to get into clinical research is thru a CRO. Start as a study coordinator. This gets you the experience that you need. Some good CRO's are Quintilles, PPD, PRA jsut to name a few. Good Luck.

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USN in Toronto, Ontario

81 months ago

Thanks Scott! Glad to know that recruiters also visit this site.

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Shivani Shah in Chicago, Illinois

81 months ago

Arlene Kray in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania said: Novum has entry level positions in our Clinical Research Training Program. crtrainingprogram.novumprs.com/

Thank you sooo much Arlene

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Burned Out in Spokane, Washington

81 months ago

Scott in Tampa, Florida said: I am a recruiter. I recruit CRA's and Regional CRA's for major pharaceutical companies. I understand all of your frustrations. Most pharmaceutical companies require experience. The best way to get into clinical research is thru a CRO. Start as a study coordinator. This gets you the experience that you need. Some good CRO's are Quintilles, PPD, PRA jsut to name a few. Good Luck.

Dear Scott in Tampa,

As a recruiter I am sure that you have heard negative things about Quintiles, PPD, and PRA. So, why do keep recommending these companies? They do not teach entry level CRAs correctly. They teach CRAs to be onsite Data Managers. They teach new CRAs that their job is to ensure the study gets completed without any problems irregardless of the harm to study subjects or the integrity of the data. They teach CRAs to just compare apples and oranges and to source verify data without really understanding what is missing or potential trends. CROs say they expect 100% source verification in their monitoring plans but only provide CRAs with enough time to do about 20% source data verification. So, inorder to keep their jobs CRAs are only actually doing 20% source data verification, yet stating they did 100% in their monitoring reports. Perhaps Scott that you should read about the ever increasing dissatisfaction the FDA has with the "quality" of site monitoring. The FDA has said since 1999 that site monitoring is of very poor quality and that it has gone downhill from 1999. Maybe, Scott that you should read about the burnout rate of new CRAs that is less than 2 years. People feel used, and abused by CROs. People should not have to give up their work ethics, personal standards of quality work, or lie in monitoring reports to maintain a job - even a CRO job.

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Prafulla in Dublin, California

81 months ago

HiDavid,
I recently read your info on CRA from Kriger Research.I am at present doing my CRA course from Kriger Research.Thanks for your info abt Kriger.I was confused whether i am taking course thro right institute or not.I am a Physical therapist with 12 yrs exp.I had 3 entry level interviews before joining this course itself but they wanted me to complete this CRA certification.Do you have any idea abt CRA jobs in California?

David Chilton in League City, Texas said: Hiy wanted Lee,
I got my CRA certification from Kriger Research International. It took about 3 months to complete. The nice thing about this program is that when you complete the course work you are given 4 clinical trial projects to work on. These are active on going clinical trials so the experience you gain from your involvememt counts as actual work exoerinece equivent to ~6 months. This is great because you can put this on your resume. Also, Kriger has a great resume design department that will help you highlight your experiences that are of value to the CRA field, thus making you more marketable. In addition, the final test you take after the course work and conclusion of the project can be taken more than once if you do not pass the first time. The content of the CRA program is identical to the information given in other CRA certification programs like the SOCRA, ACRP and others. After taking the certification course I have had a lot of companies calling me for interviews. I have not landed a position yet but in time that will change. As a matter fo fact, next week I will be interiveiwing for 3 spots with hiring managers. I believe this field is so under employed that in time anyone who has the right acedemic back ground augmented with CRA certification will get a nice position in due time. Just keep at and chances are a CRA postion will come your way. Stay positive!!
all the best
David C. MSc. CCRA

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