APSU to make job candidates more competitive with online grad certificate in biometrics
(Published May 30, 2019)
Nfii Ndikintum has a Ph.D. in statistics and over twenty-five years of industry experience, and in his career has interviewed hundreds of candidates for Statistics, Statistical Programming, Data Management and Medical Writing roles. This experience led him to develop a 12-hour graduate certificate in Biometrics and Clinical Trials Operations. This fall, the certificate will be offered online exclusively through Austin Peay State University’s Department of Mathematics and Statistics, with Dr. Ndikintum himself serving as the lead instructor.
“To the best of my knowledge, there is no certificate program like this in the nation,” he said. “This certificate should give the students a competitive edge in the workplace. If I were interviewing two students – one has a master’s degree in statistics and the other has a master’s degree in statistics, but in addition they have been exposed to how we actually work in the industry, guess who I will hire?
“Biometrics includes a lot of disciplines: Statistics, Statistical Programming, Data Management and Medical Writing – and we’re combining key aspects of these fields into one program. In additional to the student’s degree in Statistics, there are tremendous job opportunities for students with this additional broad training.”
The new program is designed for professionals who have already earned a bachelor's degree in statistics or related fields and would like to earn a graduate credential while building skills in biometrics and clinical trials operations. The online certificate can be earned in as little as two semesters, and students interested in continuing their education will be able to transition directly into the Austin Peay’s Master of Computer Science and Quantitative Methods degree program. The certificate classes will count as four of the 11 courses required for that graduate degree.
Upon completion of the Biometrics and Clinical Trials Operations Certificate, students will be able to:
- Gain the requisite skill to work in the pharmaceutical, biomedical and medical device industries.
- Understand the elements of a protocol development.
- Design a clinically sound study.
- Understand regulations and learn to communicate effectively with regulatory agencies.
- Review and understand key statistical methods used in clinical trials.
- Develop skills to successfully work in cross-functional teams.
“When I interview people, I’m not just interested in the classes you took in school,” Dr. Ndikintum said. “I’m interested in knowing these students are able to interact with the FDA, with other regulatory agencies outside the country, like in the EU. I’m also interested in knowing this student knows something of project management.”
For information on the certificate program, visit https://www.apsu.edu/grad-studies/graduateprograms/biometrics_clinicaltrials.php.