Home /  Courses And Programs / Expert Strategies and Skills for Medical and Scientific Communication

June 21, 2019 - 8:30am - 5:30pm

Learn From Expert Faculty and Life Science Leaders


The UC San Diego Extension’s Expert Strategies and Skills for Medical and Scientific Communication Professional Workshop examines the basic principles of Medical Writing, and different types of scientific communication.  Learn best practices with expert faculty and life science leaders who represent a variety of writing, research, and medical educational backgrounds.  Sessions include a Masterclass, skills workshop, expert and job/career panel targeted towards a wide variety of life science professionals, including physicians, researchers, and other communication professionals interested in exploring skills and roles in medical and scientific communications.

Medical Writing and Scientific Communications are an integral part of the life sciences industry and requires a comprehensive understanding of medical content, as well as the regulatory and compliance environment.  Learn top strategies from industry, academia and recruiters including publication strategies and management, regulatory writing, methods for enhancing communication skills among interdisciplinary teams, and trends and opportunities in the job market or professional development.   All sessions will be interactive with opportunities for discussion and questions. Participants who wish to receive the 1.00 elective credit must also complete the required readings and additional assessments which will be detailed on the course syllabus.

This Workshop is Designed For:


The workshop is ideal for a wide range of professionals currently involved or interested in writing and editing regulatory and publications deliverables and enhancing their project management skills.  While this workshop is primarily intended to serve those working in writing disciplines, the concepts and strategies that will be introduced are broadly applicable to any professional who would like to develop their communication skills.  Ideal for professionals involved in Medical Writing, Scientific Communications, Publications Planning, Regulatory Affairs, Clinical Research, Medical Education Materials Development, and Document Management.


What You Will Learn:

  • Describe a variety of career, professional development, and open recruitment opportunities;
  • Identify the principal tracks within the Medical Writing and Scientific Communication disciplines;
  • Define the role and responsibilities of medical and scientific communications within different medical affairs organizations;
  • Describe the diverse ecosystem for scientific writing and publishing from the perspectives of different practitioners;
  • Identify the factors to consider when developing, implementing, and executing a publication plan;
  • Specify the principal components of the publication planning process specifically gap analysis, needs assessment, publication objectives, strategic publication planning and project planning;
  • Apply new knowledge to describe how the regulatory environment influences medical communications practice;


Workshop Venue

UC San Diego Campus
The Village 15th Floor
2212 Scholars Dr. N
La Jolla, CA 92093

view of ocean from Village 15th floor ucsd classroom

Workshop Schedule and Presenters:

UC San Diego Campus - The Village 15th Floor                                                                                 
2212 Scholars Dr. N La Jolla, CA

Continental Breakfast and Workshop Registration

Conference Welcome and Agenda

UC San Diego faculty and guests introduce workshop formats, objectives and goals: 
Tim K. Mackey, MAS, PhD, Director & Associate Professor UCSD Extension/UCSD - School of Medicine
9:15am – 10:45am
Masterclass:  Medical and Scientific Writing, Communication, and Dissemination

In this session hear from an expert who has reported extensively on genetics, primate research, evolution, bioterrorism, research funding, ethics, and reproductive biology.  Examine strategies in writing for biomedicine, HIV/AIDS, other infectious diseases, immunology, vaccines, and on global health issues.
Jon Cohen, Staff Writer/Senior Correspondent, Science Magazine AAAS, 
This session will highlight the specific tracks in Medical Writing and explore in detail medical publication planning and development.  Examine how publication professionals are challenged by changes in the publishing environment that impacts development of medical publications. Recent developments in medication publications will also be discussed with topics that will include current publication guidelines regarding authorship requirements and data reporting, and changes in the peer-review environment including new types of peer-review.
Donna Simcoe, MS, MS, MBA, CMPP Medical Publications Consultant/ISMPP Committee Member/AMWA Pacific Southwest Chapter Past-President/UCSD Extension Medical Writing
11:00am - 12:15pm
Top Publishing Strategies:  Lessons from Academia and Industry

Session explores the principles of publication strategies for academic and industry researchers, including technical writing elements, gap analysis, publication formats (eg, abstracts, posters & manuscripts), which journals to target, newer formats enhanced content (audiovisuals), and the emerging role of social media.  Authorship criteria and roles and responsibilities for manuscript production and submission and use and application of relevant guidelines will also be addressed.
Dikran Toroser, PhD CMPP, AMGEN Inc./UCSD Extension Medical Writing Faculty
Tim K. Mackey, MAS, PhD, Director & Associate Professor UCSD Extension/UCSD - School of Medicine
12:15pm - 1:30pm:  UCC
Conference Luncheon and Networking

1:30pm - 2:15pm
Regulatory Writing Essentials for Industry

Session will provide an overview of production of regulatory documents for the different phases of clinical trials, regulatory agencies responsibilities, and important differences between development processes in the U.S. and those of other countries; and the impact of regulatory approval processes on corporate strategy.   Examine how skilled regulatory medical writing can add value to clinical study documentation, through interpreting and summarizing complex scientific and statistical data.

Yeshi Mikyas, PhD, ELS, RAC; Pfizer/UCSD Extension Medical Writing
2:15pm - 3:15pm
Get to Know Your PIO

This session explores how Public Information Officers (PIOs) at academic institutions like UC San Diego work with scientists and clinicians to communicate research advances to the general public using 1) owned media, such as websites, social media and newsletters and 2) earned media, or pitching story ideas to external media outlets.
Heather Buschman, PhD, Communications and Media Relations at UC San Diego Health
Coffee Break

3:30pm - 4:15pm
Panel:  Hot Topics in Medical and Scientific Communication

A panel of experts from biotech, academia, and agenc yhost a discussion of trending topics in Medical and Scientific Communication.  Panel will explore specific trends including NIH grants, investigator initiated study grants, and SBIR grants.  Learn about the importance of writing for distinct audiences, such as the call for plain language summaries in the peer-reviewed literature, the rise in patient engagement in publications and how enhanced publication content is being used in the peer-reviewed literature. (i.e. video summaries, visual abstracts, infographics)   Discussion will highlight the importance of real-world evidence (RWE) and offer a comparison of professional opportunities in academia vs industry.
Moderator:  Tim K. Mackey, Director & Associate Professor UCSD Extension/UCSD - School of Medicine
Tim Collinson, BSc (Hons) CMPP, Business Unit Head, West Coast, Fishawack Communications
Michelle M Merrigan, PhD, Associate Director, Medical Writing La Jolla Pharmaceutical Company
4:15pm - 5:15pm
Where are the jobs? Presentation on Medical Writing and Scientific Communication Workforce Data and Expert Panel

Presentation of workforce data on medical writing and scientific communication jobs and professional development.  This will include a panel of diverse medical and scientific writing and communication professionals who will discuss their different pathways into these professions and the value and need for specific education in the field.
Industry and Career Insights: 
Josh D. Shapiro, PhD, Assistant Dean of Research Affairs, UC San Diego Extension

Expert Panel: 
Tim Collinson, BSc (Hons) CMPP, Business Unit Head, West Coast, Fishawack Communications
Yeshi Mikyas, PhD, ELS, CMPP, RAC; Pfizer/UCSD Extension Medical Writing
Heather Buschman, PhD, Communications and Media Relations at UC San Diego Health
5:15pm - 5:30pm
Meeting Adjourns


Other Credits: 1.00 Credit

Course Number: FPM-40655
Credit: 1.00 unit(s)
Related Certificate Programs: Medical Writing

+ Expand All