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Translational Science Training and Education Resources

We provide leadership to advance the field of translational science by offering courses in translational science, webinars and educational and training resources.

Translational Science Training and Education Resources

Translational science bridges the gap between scientific discoveries and improved patient care. There is a need for training and education resources to equip researchers with the necessary skills and knowledge to accelerate the translation of biomedical innovations. Our primary goal for the training and education resources is to grow a skilled workforce capable of effectively navigating the complex landscape of translational research. 

NCATS Courses in Translational Science

Principles of Preclinical Translational Science

This short online course provides an overview of core concepts in effective preclinical translational science, using an engaging case study-based teaching approach. This course is proven effective at teaching complex concepts to a broad and diverse range of learners. These include trainees from postbacs through postdocs, scientists across career stages, and administrators and patient advocates involved in the translational science space.

Course faculty teach effective practices in translation through the story of a highly successful translational research partnership involving NCATS, the National Cancer Institute (NCI), Northwestern University and the University of Kansas. The partnership created a promising potential drug — called metarrestin — shown to stop cancer spread in animal models; this drug currently is being tested in a first-in-human clinical trial. The faculty include more than a dozen leading scientists at NCATS and NCI who worked on this project. They teach effective practices for preclinical drug discovery and development by sharing the story of the work they conducted through this partnership.

Students will leave the course with a deeper understanding of translational science, and many principles and strategies for effective preclinical translational science. Course learning objectives include the following:

  • Understand the definitions and goals of translational research and translational science.
  • Identify core principles of translational science that characterize effective approaches to advance progress along the translational pipeline.
  • Learn a range of preclinical strategies that reflect these core principles.
  • Learn about the research process involved in advancing a scientific discovery to a promising compound to be tested in clinical trials.
  • Learn about the varied roles of different disciplines and agencies — including industry, government agencies and academia — in advancing translational research and effective approaches for cross-disciplinary collaboration and cross-sectoral partnerships.

Learn more about the course:

Learn about the course design, use and evaluation:

Translational Science in the COVID-19 Pandemic — Accelerating and Enhancing Our Response Across Preclinical, Clinical and Population Health Research

This short online course provides an insider’s view of the role of translational science in the biomedical research response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This course describes in detail a range of research activities — from preclinical to clinical to population health — that were led or supported by NCATS in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Through this lens, the course teaches students effective approaches and strategies in translational science that have been key to the success of these efforts and can be used for other translational research activities.

Students will leave the course with a set of wide-ranging translational science strategies that they can use in their future work in translational research. Course learning objectives include the following:

  • Identify key translational science challenges in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Identify effective translational science approaches NCATS has used to advance preclinical, clinical and public health research with relevance to addressing COVID-19.
  • Explain how the translational science approaches NCATS used in a variety of projects related to COVID-19 can be applied broadly to research that is focused on other diseases and conditions.
  • Reflect on the translational science principles highlighted throughout the course and how they relate to one’s own (current or future) work.
  • Learn about the research collaborations and partnerships needed to advance translational progress, as well as legal approaches that help form and maintain effective cross-sectoral partnerships.

Learn more about the course:

Assay Guidance Manual

The Assay Guidance Manual (AGM) is a free, comprehensive online resource that provides guidance and best practices for the development and optimization of high-quality assays for drug discovery and development. It serves as a practical manual for scientists and researchers involved in assay development, screening and optimization processes.

Read publications about the AGM initiative:

Translational Science Resources

Related Content

Translational Science Education Publications

Several articles have been published highlighting translational science courses, education and case-studies.

NCATS Toolkit for Patient-Focused Therapy Development

This toolkit is an in-house collection of online resources that can help patient groups advance through the research and development process for new treatments.

Genetic and Rare Diseases (GARD) Information Center

GARD is designed to provide all-inclusive information about rare and genetic diseases to patients, their families, health care providers, researchers and the public.

Last updated on April 19, 2024