Online Courses and Certificate Program in Implementation Science

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The Online Certificate Program is a part-time program focused on theories and methods relevant to the design of strategies to facilitate uptake of health-related interventions. Scholars can choose to take individual courses, or complete four required and two elective courses to obtain a Certificate. The Online Courses and Certificate program are designed for people from a broad range of professional settings who are currently engaged in the development, implementation, and evaluation of strategies to promote and improve health and health care quality, including clinical and public health researchers, quality improvement officers, community-based clinic staff, public health and public policy practitioners, and clinicians. We welcome trainees who work in clinical and public health settings outside the U.S.

For each course, all materials (lecture slides, lecture videos, reading assignments, and homework assignments) will be accessed via the course website maintained with the UCSF Collaborative Learning Environment (CLE). Peer and instructor feedback on homework assignments will occur through an Online Forum.

UCSF students enrolled in the TICR Master’s in Clinical Research or Advanced Training in Clinical Research Certificate programs are not eligible for the Online courses or Certificate Program. These students should review the TICR website for enrollment information.


Upon completion of the Online Certificate Program, scholars will be able to:

  • Identify appropriate health interventions to translate into practice. This will be achieved by identifying interventions that have sufficient evidence of effectiveness and/or are recommended by relevant societies or organizations, and that are important to stakeholders in the target implementation setting.
  • Design effective and sustainable implementation strategies. This will be achieved by identifying community, patient, clinician and organizational factors that serve as barriers and facilitators to translating research results into everyday practices, policies and—ultimately—improved health.
  • Design comprehensive evaluations of intervention implementation strategies. This will be achieved by applying principles and methods of process and outcome evaluation, and by identifying the appropriate qualitative and quantitative measures to characterize intervention implementation and impact.
  • Develop fundable implementation science grant proposals. This will be achieved by making a compelling case for translation of your selected health-related intervention into practice, policy or public health and integrating conceptual frameworks into the design and/or evaluation of your implementation strategy.


The Online Certificate Program is ideal for scholars who are actively involved in implementing a health intervention or quality improvement program. Although not required, prior training in qualitative and/or quantitative research methods will enable scholars to best take advantage of the curriculum.


Fall (September–December)

Winter (January-March)

Spring (April–June)

Course Requirements

All courses have minimum requirements related to turning in assignments and providing peer feedback on assignments. Students who meet the minimum requirements will receive a course completion certificate within four weeks of the end of the course. Students who are unable to meet the minimum requirements can continue to audit a course (ii.e., have access to course materials) but will not receive instructor feedback and will not receive a course completion certificate

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To obtain the UCSF Online Implementation Science Certificate, students must register for and complete 6 courses as follows:

  1. Introduction to Implementation Science: Theory and Design (IMS 245A, Fall Quarter)
  2. Community-Engaged Research (IMS 248, Fall Quarter)
  3. Program Evaluation in Clinical and Public Health Settings (IMS 242A, Winter Quarter)
  4. One of the following intervention design courses:
    1. Designing Individual-Centered Implementation Strategies (IMS 246A, Winter Quarter)
    2. Designing Interventions to Change Organizational Behavior (IMS 247A, Spring Quarter)
  5. Two of the following elective courses:
    1. IMS 246A or IMS 247A (whichever is not taken to satisfy the above intervention design course requirement)
    2. Translating Evidence into Policy (IMS 249A, Spring Quarter)
    3. Study Designs for Intervention Research in Real-World Settings (IMS241A, Spring Quarter)

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The fee for each course is $2000 for individuals affiliated with UCSF and UC Berkeley and $2500 for individuals not affiliated with UCSF or UC Berkeley. UCSF or UC Berkeley Affiliation is defined as concurrent enrollment in a UCSF or UC Berkeley sponsored residency or post-doctoral fellowship program; or a registered student in one of the UCSF or UC Berkeley professional schools or graduate programs; or individuals who hold full-time salaried UCSF or UC Berkeley faculty, academic or staff positions. Applicants will be asked to provide proof of UCSF or UC Berkeley status.

Fees do not include books, supplies, or software (these costs are minimal as most readings are from open-access journals).

See the FAQs for details about providing payment, obtaining refunds, and more.

Students enrolled in UCSF Advanced Training in Clinical Research, Masters of Applied Studies in Clinical Research or Doctoral Program in Epidemiology and Translational Science should apply to enroll in Implementation Science courses directly through their program. Fees will be waived for these students.

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