How Do I Become a Clinician-Researcher?

YaShekia King

Clinician-researchers are medical doctors who also are trained to perform scientific research. These people need to be analytical and enjoy discovering new information while also meeting the needs of patients. They can work in settings such as research organizations, colleges, and medical schools. An individual who aspires to become a clinician-researcher has to finish four years of undergraduate training followed by four years of medical school. He or she simultaneously must complete a postgraduate degree to become eligible for work opportunities in this industry.

Clinicians need to keep up with continuing education requirements through training and other activities to retain their licenses to practice.
Clinicians need to keep up with continuing education requirements through training and other activities to retain their licenses to practice.

If you want to become a clinician-researcher, you first need to complete a four-year bachelor’s degree in an area of science such as chemistry or biology. To become enrolled in this type of educational program, you have to fill out your chosen school’s admission form as well as send in your standardized test scores. The school will also ask you to provide your high school diploma or the equivalent certification in addition to your high school transcript.

Most clinician-researchers have a doctoral degree.
Most clinician-researchers have a doctoral degree.

After acquiring an undergraduate degree, you should apply to medical school. An individual who wishes to become a clinician-researcher typically must have a medical degree, so this is critical to enter this field. Getting into this type of formal four-year training program is competitive and requires that you prove that you have completed your bachelor’s degree program as well as pass a medical school admission test. Other enrollment requirements include submitting reference letters from former professors or employers who can attest to your ability to handle the rigor of a medical college program.

You need to spend your time in medical school deciding the specialty area that you would like to study in this industry. Your courses teach you information such as medical law as well as what types of medications target certain types of diseases. Before you can graduate, you also must complete clinical rotations in occupational areas such as surgery or internal medicine to identify your primary area of interest when you become a clinician-researcher.

While completing medical training, you also have to complete a doctoral degree program to be successful in this career area. This type of advanced four-year degree program often is combined with a four-year medical degree program for someone who wants to work in both research and medicine. As a result, about eight years total are required to finish the entire dual program. You should be prepared to complete labs along with an extensive original research project because, when you become a clinician-researcher, you will be responsible for handling research projects in addition to caring for patients. The schooling makes you eligible to pursue paid on-the-job residency training opportunities in your medical specialty in addition to earning licensure and certification by passing industry exams, thus preparing you for permanent work.

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