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Design and Interpretation of Clinical Trials, Johns Hopkins University

1,326 ratings
227 reviews

About this Course

Clinical trials are experiments designed to evaluate new interventions to prevent or treat disease in humans. The interventions evaluated can be drugs, devices (e.g., hearing aid), surgeries, behavioral interventions (e.g., smoking cessation program), community health programs (e.g. cancer screening programs) or health delivery systems (e.g., special care units for hospital admissions). We consider clinical trials experiments because the investigators rather than the patients or their doctors select the treatment the patients receive. Results from randomized clinical trials are usually considered the highest level of evidence for determining whether a treatment is effective because trials incorporates features to ensure that evaluation of the benefits and risks of treatments are objective and unbiased. The FDA requires that drugs or biologics (e.g., vaccines) are shown to be effective in clinical trials before they can be sold in the US. The course will explain the basic principles for design of randomized clinical trials and how they should be reported. In the first part of the course, students will be introduced to terminology used in clinical trials and the several common designs used for clinical trials, such as parallel and cross-over designs. We will also explain some of the mechanics of clinical trials, like randomization and blinding of treatment. In the second half of the course, we will explain how clinical trials are analyzed and interpreted. Finally, we will review the essential ethical consideration involved in conducting experiments on people....

Top reviews


Mar 20, 2016

This course is well-designed, well-paced and well-structured. The study examples described in this course really help you understand the importance of design and interpretation of clinical trials.


Jun 02, 2018

The instructors have broken down the concepts in a very effective manner and have designed very thoughtful discussion prompts. The course really helped me understand the basics of clinical trials.

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220 Reviews

By Lisa Li

Apr 05, 2019

Thrilled to finish this course. I'm gonna use what I learnt from this course in my current job and share with my colleagues.

By mariella bodemeier loayza careaga

Mar 27, 2019

I'm very pleased with the design and interpretation of clinical trials course. It is well constructed and the lectures are interesting and focused.

I recomnend this course for those who want to gain some knownledge about this subject.

By Petre Mitrea

Mar 21, 2019

Useful and interesting course for me.

By Nancy Hernandez

Mar 20, 2019

Really great course that goes over clinical trials and very important terms in order to understand the topic well.

By Athira B

Mar 18, 2019

Excellent course for understanding basics of clinical trial in detail. Very useful, informative, detailed sections with examples.

By Ramez Morcos

Mar 08, 2019

Love it.

By Julio Cesar Garcia de Alencar

Feb 18, 2019

Good course!

Useful lessons, not tiring.

I learned a lot about it!

By Kumar Sanjiv

Feb 10, 2019

its quite good course for overview....

By Paula Cahuina Lope

Feb 09, 2019

Excelente curso muy practico!

By Sixtus Aguree

Jan 31, 2019

A great introductory course in clinical trials; designs and interpretation.