ICMR School of Public Health


An Online Course for Medical Postgraduates and Teachers in Medical Institutions in India  

As mandated by the National Medical Commission 

For Whom?

Medical Postgraduates (MD, MS, MCH, DM) admitted from Academic Year 2019-2020 onwards.

Teachers in medical institutions

Course duration 

Self-Paced; enroll and complete the course at any time

Learning mode
  • Video lectures
  • Presen​tation s​lides
  • MCQs
  • Additiontal resources
Course certificate

Participants who successfully secure a score of 50% or above in the final proctored exam will be awarded an        e-verifiable course completion certificate. 
Click here to get your certificate, if you have not received after completing the course successfully.

About the course

In order to improve the research skills of Indian medical postgraduates (PG) and teachers in medical institutions, the National Medical Commission (NMC, erstwhile Medical Council of India) has mandated a uniform research methodology course. This online course, “Basic Course in Biomedical Research”, will be offered by ICMR-National Institute of Epidemiology (ICMR-NIE), Chennai.

The course will explain the fundamental concepts of research methodology in health. It will be delivered through video lectures and reading materials. Certification will be done based on lecture wise assignments and a final proctored exam.

Enroll now

Teaching assistants

Dr Sharan Murali

Scientist - B

Dr Navaneeth S Krishna

Scientist - B

Dr V Saravana Kumar

Scientist - B

Dr N Ramya

Scientist - B

Dr Joshua Chadwick

Scientist - B

Dr S Devika

Scientist - B

Course Process

  • Enrollment will open throughout the year
  • No deadline for enrolment into the course
  • No deadline for submission of assignments 
  • Participants can learn on their own pace and schedule
  • Once you secure the cut off scores in assignments (50% in every assignment for 23 lectures), candidates will become eligible for exam registration.
  • Candidates can then register for the proctored exam for the next available date

Course Assignments

Out of 25 lectures, the first 23 lectures will have online assignments consisting of 10 Multiple-Choice Questions (MCQs) each. A minimum score of 50% in every assignment is required to register for the final proctored exam.

Final Proctored Exam

When a participant successfully secures the minimum score of 50% in every assignment for 23 lectures, the exam registration link for the next available date will be provided. To register for examination, the participant will have to fill-up an online form and pay the examination fees of Rs.1000 online. The city-wise list of examination centres will be made available at the time of registration. Securing a minimum score of 50% in the proctored exam is necessary to receive the pass certificate. 


Participants who successfully secure a score of 50% or above in the final proctored exam will be awarded an e-verifiable course completion certificate

Course Syllabus

Conceptualizing a research study

  • Introduction to health research
  • Formulating research question, hypothesis and objectives
  • Literature review

Epidemiological considerations in designing a research study 

  • Measures of disease frequency
  • Descriptive study designs
  • Analytical study designs
  • Experimental study designs
  • Validity of Epidemiological studies
  • Qualitative research methods: An overview

Biostatistical considerations in designing a research study

  • Measures of study variable
  • Sampling methods
  • Calculating sample size and power

Planning a research study

  • Selection and study population
  • Study plan and project management 
  • Designing data collection tools
  • Principles of data collection tools 
  • Data management 
  • Overview of data analysis

Ethical issues in a research study

  • Ethical framework for health research 
  • Conducting clinical trials 

Writing a research protocol

  • Preparing a concept paper for research projects  
  • Elements of a protocol for research studies 
  • Publication ethics
  • Manuscript writing 
  • Grant proposal writing

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I enrol for the online course “Basic Course in Biomedical Research (BCBR)”?

You can enrol for the course if you are an medical postgraduate or a teacher in a medical institution, recognized by the National Medical Commission (NMC). 

You can enroll for the course if you are a dental postgraduate or a teacher in a dental college, recognized by the Dental Council of India.

Medical Postgraduates

As per the MCI notice dated 9 July 2019, BCBR is mandatory for Medical Postgraduates  admitted from July 2019 onwards. Medical Postgraduates include those pursuing MD/MS in  a medical college approved by the National Medical Commission (NMC).

Medical Teachers

As per the Gazette of India notification dated 12 February 2020 for ‘Minimum Qualifications  for Teachers In Medical Institutions’ approved by the National Medical Commission (NMC),  BCBR is mandatory for medical teachers for their promotion.

I’m neither a medical post graduate nor a teacher from a medical college. Can I enroll for BCBR? 

No. All other interested candidates including medical undergraduate students, clinical/public health/ laboratory researchers, physicians, research associates, allied health professionals, scientists, statisticians, ethics committee members, project managers and those interested in health research can enroll for the ‘Health Research Fundamentals’ (Please follow ICMR-NIE website for the same-  https://nie.gov.in/icmr_sph/HRF.html  This course is also run by the ICMR- National Institute of Epidemiology.

Please tell me about the enrolment process   

• Step 1 – Go to https://onlinecourses.nptel.ac.in/noc22_md01/preview

• Step 2 – Click on the tab "JOIN" seen on the right-hand corner

• Step 3 – Use your pre-existing Google or Microsoft account to login. (Please use the same email ID till the end of the course. Do not create a new account if you forget the password.)

• Step 4 – Fill “My Profile” and click SAVE.

For further details watch tutorial on “how to enrol”  https://youtu.be/e_jaFbQT2xU

Can I change my profile after the enrolment is over? 

Yes. After you sign in, you can click on ‘My Profile’ under which there is an option called ‘EDIT PROFILE’. You may click on it to edit the relevant details. However, you cannot change your email ID.

For further details watch tutorial on “how to sign in, course tour and edit profile” https://youtu.be/wFcTtwK39DY

How can I retrieve my forgotten login ID and password after enrollment?   

Please use your regular Email as login ID. It is always advisable to remember your password. If you forget your password, you can retrieve your login credentials by using "Forgot your password?". However, if you forget the login ID, kindly send us an email or call our office to retrieve your login email ID.

For further details watch tutorial on “how to handle issues on forgot email id and password”  https://youtu.be/sTG1SlAAsHw

How can I access the course and submit the assignments?   

• Step 1: Sign in to the course page https://onlinecourses.nptel.ac.in/noc22_md01/preview

• Step 2: After signing in using your login ID and password, click “Basic course in Biomedical Research” under Course outline in the top left of the course page.

• Step 3: In the left panel, all the 25 lectures will be available. Click to open the intended lecture.

• Step 4: Below each lecture, find “Quiz: Assignment” for that lecture.

• Step 5: Click on the “Quiz: Assignment” which you would like to take. The assignment page will open.

• Step 6: Complete the assignment by choosing the appropriate answer.

• Step 7: Verify your answers before submitting and click “Submit Answers”.

• Step 8: Immediately after submission, you will get the scores.

                                If you have scored the minimum eligibility of 50%, you can move to the next assignment. 

                                If you have not scored the minimum eligibility of 50%, you can click on the ' Retake Test ' at your convenience. During the retest you will get a new set of 10 MCQs.

• You may submit the assignments any number of times until you get the minimum eligibility score of 50%. No restriction to take the retest.

• You will not be allowed to resubmit the assignment once the minimum eligibility is met. 

• There is no negative marking.

For further details watch tutorial on “How to access course materials”  https://youtu.be/GHcy660N-oM  

and “how to submit assignments”  https://youtu.be/MeYUruIdD5k

How will I know my assignment score?  

I n two ways you can check the assignment scores.

  • Once you submit the assignment you will get the score for the assignment submitted.
  • Click on the ‘Progress’ button on your course page, the lecture-wise assignment score will be visible to you.
How can I download the course material?   

Please follow the steps to access the course material.

1. Access course home page from the link: https://onlinecourses.nptel.ac.in/noc21_md05/preview

2. Login using the e-mail ID that was used to enrol for the course

3. Click on your user ID on the right side of login page then click on "MY COURSES" tab

4. Your course page will open, click on "Go to course" tab

5. On the left panel, click on “Basic Course in Biomedical Research” tab

6. Click the download link at the bottom of the page. This will take you to a new page where all the course materials including lectures, transcripts, and assignments are available for downloading.

How to ask queries on lectures?   

You may follow the steps below for posting queries on “Basic Course in Biomedical Research”

After accessing the course materials 

1. If you have any queries/comments to be addressed after accessing the course material you can post them in the discussion forum.

2. The discussion forum can be accessed by clicking on “Ask a Question” tab in the menu bar of the “Basic Course in Biomedical Research” home page, followed by selecting the appropriate lecture from the pre-existing discussion threads.

3. You can then type your query/comment in “click here to reply”. Once you have finished typing, click on “post” to get a response from Faculty/Teaching assistants.

4. Please post any queries that you have only in the discussion threads assigned for that particular lecture [for e.g., if you have a query related to lecture 22; you need to find a thread named: “Queries/comments for lecture 22. Elements of a protocol for research studies” and post your queries therein. This will help our Faculty/Teaching assistants in noticing immediately and addressing the queries expeditiously]

5. Once you post a query, our Teaching Assistants will respond to you.

6. Please confine your questions to the lectures. It is beyond our scope to respond to any other queries.

For further details watch tutorial on “how to ask queries on lecture” https://youtu.be/RB8n-Xhzo0c

How to contact the BCBR team for non-academic queries?  

Email ID: noc22-md01@nptel.iitm.ac.in (All technical queries)

Please tell me about the exam registration process 

The registration for the certification exam will be open only to those learners who enrol for the course and secure more than or equal to 50% in every assignment for 23 lectures. A registration fee of 1000 INR should be paid to appear for the proctored exam. However, 50% of this fee will be waived for candidates belong to the SC/ST category, and persons with more than 40% disability. All exam related information will be posted in the announcements section of the course page.