Good research practice: Ten simple rules for clinical research

Course description

Good research planning, conducting, and reporting of research are the cornerstones to guarantee transparency and reproducibility of the scientific method. In the recent years, the ‘reproducibility crisis’ in scientific research has shed light on the importance of advocating for Good Research Practices. It is each individual researcher’s responsibility to actively integrate such practices in their daily research activity.

The course will be designed following the 10 simple rules highlighted in a paper by the Swiss Reproducibility Network – Training Initiative team (available at: The 10 rules include 1) specifying your research question, 2) writing and registering a study protocol, 3) reducing potential source of bias, 4) establishing a data management plan, 5) ensuring research reproducibility, 6) making your research open, 7) justifying your sample size, 8) getting statistical expertise, 9) reporting all findings, and 10) following reporting guidelines. The 10 rules will be organized into three main themes: planning, execution and reporting of research. The rules will be cover through the scopes of two articles either presenting the extent of the pre-existing issue in the literature, introducing solutions to enhance good research practices or real-life example of misuses of research practices and their impact on decision making.

During this course you will learn the importance of good research practices, how to identify potential pitfalls and how to overcome them to enhance the quality and reproducibility of your own research. It will also provide you with an overview of the existing tools which will help you to ensure your research follows good research practices.

The course aims to be highly interactive and experiential. You will be invited to share your experience and/or knowledge regarding good research practices upon which the discussion will be built on.

Course structure

This 3-week course requires students to:

  1. complete weekly reading prerequisites (3 articles related to the specific topic of the week) and
  2. attend a 4-hour in-person session per week

Required Reading


Course dates

TBD; the next course cycle is planned for autumn 2024.

Target audience

Clincial researchers and PhD students enrolled at the University of Basel (Faculty of Medicine, Biomedical Engineering, Biomedical Ethics, Medicines Development, Nursing Science, Public Health/ Epidemiology or Sport Science) are eligible to register for the course. Please contact us if you are interested, but enrolled in another PhD programme. In general, all persons interested in these topics are welcome

Minimum 6 and maximum 10 registered participants. Priority will be given to PhD students.

Prerequisites for attending

Intention to soon conduct or currently conducting a research project. There are no formal knowledge prerequisites.

Learning objectives:

Upon successful completion of this course, the students will be able to

  1. Understand the importance of Good Research Practices
  2. Identify pitfalls jeopardizing reproducibility of research and how to overcome them
  3. Appraise the scientific method

Work load

  • 20 hours of workload distributed over 3 weeks
  • Written response to all weekly assignments related to the course content
  • Active participation in weekly discussions
  • Attendance to all sessions is required

Note for PhD students: The workload of this course will be tranfered into ECTS credits automatically if the course is listed in your approved learning agreement.

Assessment format


Study direction

Perrine Janiaud, PhD and PD Dr. med. Lars G Hemkens

Teaching staff

PD Dr. med. Lars G Hemkens
Lead Pragmatic Trials and Real World Evidence at RC2NB
Senior Scientist Department of Clinical Research

Perrine Janiaud, PhD
Clinical Researcher at RC2NB
Research Fellow at the Department of Clinical Research


Mareike Gräter
Training and Education, Department of Clinical Research


The course is free of charge.


Course language is English
Certificates will be issued after successful course completion


If you are interested in the course, please send us a short e-mail