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Clinical Sas Programmer Interview Questions

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What Is Your Experience With Transport Files

Clinical SAS programmer Interview question 16 – AE Date Imputation in ADaM

The interviewer wants to know whether you have created transport files in your career. Show them that you can do that effectively by explaining what they entail. Your answer should be convincing to the interview panel.

Sample Answer

I have created several SAS Xport files through Proc Copy, and data step for FDA submissions. Given that these are version 5 files, I usually use lib name engine and Proc copy procedure. The labels are usually shorter than 40 bytes, the variable names are 8 bytes, and the character variable width is usually confined to 300 bytes. All these constraints help prevent the termination of the copy procedure.

What Is Sas What Are The Functions Does It Performs

SAS means Statistical Analysis System, which is an integrated set of software products.

  • Information retrieval and data management
  • Writing reports and graphics
  • Statistical analytics, econometrics and data mining
  • Business planning, forecasting, and decision support
  • Operation research and Project management
  • Quality Improvement

How Does Sas Process Missing Data Values

Interviewers ask this question to learn about your understanding of how SAS processes information. A strong answer can assure them you can interpret data reports properly. In your reply, consider discussing how SAS responds to unknown variables and explain the impact of missing data on your statistical analysis.

Example: “SAS automatically represents missing values with a period in the database. When processing data, you can also create provisions to stop the report if a field is empty. This allows you to abort a process if there’s missing information to avoid any resulting errors.”


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What Is The Use Of Sas Array

A SAS array is used for identifying a group of variables that can be processed within a data step. So, once the array is defined the programmer can perform similar tasks for a sequence of related variables known as array elements.

The syntax of an array is defined as shown below:

Array array_name  Array_values 

Explain Sas What Are The Functions It Performs


SAS, i.e., Statistical Analysis System, is a combined set of software solutions that helps users analyze data.

  • It can change, manipulate, analyze, and retrieve data.
  • With SAS, numerical analysis can be done.
  • We have several SAS tools to succeed at writing programs that analyze data and create reports.
  • We get quality data analytics with SAS.

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How Does Proc Sql Work

Answer: PROC SQL is a simultaneous process for all the observations. The following steps happen when PROC SQL is executed:

  • SAS scans each statement in the SQL procedure and check syntax errors, such as missing semicolons and invalid statements.
  • SQL optimizer scans the query inside the statement. The SQL Optimizer decides how the SQL query should be executed in order to minimize run time.
  • Any tables in the FROM statement are loaded into the data engine where they can then be accessed in memory.
  • Code and Calculations are executed.
  • Final Table is created in memory.
  • Final Table is sent to the output table described in the SQL statement.
  • What Is The Difference Between One To One Merge And Match Merge Give An Example

    Answer: If both data sets in the merge statement are sorted by id and each observation in one data set has a corresponding observation in the other data set, a one-to-one merge is suitable.

    data mydata1

    I hope this set of SAS interview questions will help you in preparing for your interview. Further, I would recommend SAS Tutorial videos from Edureka to learn more.

    This video series on SAS Tutorial provides a complete background into the SAS components along with Real-Life case studies used in Banking and Finance industries. We have personally designed the use cases so as to provide an all round expertise to anyone running the code.

    Got a question for us? Please mention it in the comments section and we will get back to you at the earliest.

    If you wish to learn SAS and build a career in domain of SAS and build expertise to understand how SAS works in the back-end, explore data with SAS procedures, apply various data mining techniques and perform work on a industry-relevant case study, check out our interactive, live-online SAS Certification Training here, that comes with 24*7 support to guide you throughout your learning period.

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    Sas Interview Questions And Answers

    1) Describe the phases of clinical trials?Ans: These are the following four phases of the clinical trials:Phase 1: Test a new drug or treatment to a small group of people to evaluate its safety.Phase 2: The experimental drug or treatment is given to a large group of people to see that the drug is effective or not for that treatment.Phase 3: The experimental drug or treatment is given to a large group of people to see its effectiveness, monitor side effects and compare it to commonly used treatments.Phase 4: The 4 phase study includes the post marketing studies including the drugs risk, benefits etc.

    2) Describe the validation procedure? How would you perform the validation for TLG as well as analysis data set?Ans: Validation procedure is used to check the output of the SAS program generated by the source programmer. In this process validator write the program and generate the output. If this output is same as the output generated by the SAS programmers output then the program is considered to be valid. We can perform this validation for TLG by checking the output manually and for analysis data set it can be done using PROC COMPARE.

    3) How would you perform the validation for the listing, which has 400 pages?Ans: It is not possible to perform the validation for the listing having 400 pages manually. To do this, we convert the listing in data sets by using PROC RTF and then after that we can compare it by using PROC COMPARE.

    ICH E6: Guideline, Good Clinical Practice

    What Are The Default Statistics That Proc Means Produce

    Clinical SAS programmer Interview question – 1
    PROC MEANS Output

    For detailed explanation, see this tutorial –SAS : Where Vs IF

  • WHERE statement can be used in procedures to subset data while IF statement cannot be used in procedures.
  • WHERE can be used as a data set option while IF cannot be used as a data set option.
  • WHERE statement is more efficient than IF statement. It tells SAS not to read all observations from the data set
  • WHERE statement can be used to search for all similar character values that sound alike while IF statement cannot be used.
  • WHERE statement can not be used when reading data using INPUT statement whereas IF statement can be used.
  • Multiple IF statements can be used to execute multiple conditional statements
  • When it is required to use newly created variables, useIF statement as it doesn’t require variables to exist in the READIN data set
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    What Are The Benefits Of Using Sas For Medical And Clinical Applications

    Well understanding everything about the core clinical applications is almost difficult. The SAS has been provided with some dynamic features which are dedicated to handling complex tasks in this domain. The following are some of the key advantages.

    • This tool is quite efficient in performing its tasks
    • All the information about the patients, medicines, and important sections can be accessed and managed under one go
    • It is useful in medicine prescription and management of the same

    Explain What You Mean By Symget And Symput

    In a data step, SYMGET returns a macro variable’s value. Conversely, the primary function of SYMPUT is to store the value of the data set in a macro variable.

    Syntax of Symput:

    Syntax of SYMGET:


    Example: In the following program we have created a macro variable and then we have used the symput function to put the value where our key is ‘avar’ and then we have used the symget function to get the micro variable value.

    * Create a macro variable.  data dataset  set sashelp.class  if _N_ = 1 then do  call symput  end  run  %put & avar  * Get macro variable value in a dataset  data needit  var1=symget  run 

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    Suppose You Need To Run A Program In The Domain What Would Be The Style Of The Syntax

    There are some basic elements that users should be careful about. The very first thing is every line must have a semi-colon at its end. There should be a statement that defines the data. The statement or the word should be separated from one another through space. There should be an Input statement justifying the purpose.

    What Do You Mean By The Scan Function In Sas And Write Its Usage

    Pin by Training Academy on ICLINICAA

    The Scan function is typically used to extract words from a value marked by delimiters . The SCAN function selects individual words from text or variables containing text and stores them in new variables.


    • Argument: It specifies the character variable or text to be scanned.
    • N: The number n indicates which word to read.
    • Delimiters: These are characters values or special signs in a text string.


    Consider that we would like to extract the first word from a sentence ‘Hello, Welcome to Scaler!’. In this case, the delimiter used is a blank.

    data _null_  string="Hello, Welcome to Scaler!"  first_word=scan  put first_word =  run 

    First_word returns the word ‘hello’ since it’s the first word in the above sentence. Now, consider that we would like to extract the last word from a sentence ‘Hello, Welcome to Scaler!’. In this case, the delimiter used is a blank.

    data _null_ string="Hello, Welcome to Scaler!" last_word=scan put last_word = run 

    Last_word returns ‘Scaler!’ As Scaler is the last word in the above sentence.

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    Tell Us What You Know About Iss And Ise

    The interviewer is gauging your knowledge on a particular concept of Clinical SAS. You must have interacted with ISS and ISE. Give a conclusive and convincing answer to the interviewer. Be as detailed as possible when answering such questions.

    Sample Answer

    ISS, which stands for integrated summary of safety, integrates safety information from animal, clinical pharmacology, epidemiological data, and an array of other sources. It, therefore, sums up data from several sources and focuses on analyses beyond individual studies. ISE, on the other hand, is the integrated summary of efficacies. Both are required in the safety and effectiveness submissions and must be submitted in the application. They integrate different data analyses and do not summarize them as most people would want to believe.

    How To Identify And Remove Unique And Duplicate Values

    data readin input ID Name $ Score cards 1 David 451 David 742 Sam 452 Ram 543 Bane 873 Mary 923 Bane 874 Dane 235 Jenny 875 Ken 876 Simran 638 Priya 72 run 
    PROC SORT DATA=readin NODUP BY _all_ RUN 
    SAS NODUP Output

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    What Exactly Do You Know About The Case Report Tabulation

    It is basically a report which every pharmaceutical company has to submit to the FDA for getting the necessary approvals. The Clinical SAS module is good enough to be trusted for the generation of this report in an effective manner.

    There are various filters that can be applied and the sections can be nullified with the domain in a very easy manner.

    Q18 Explain The Main Difference Between Validation And Verification

    Clinical SAS programmer Interview question 15

    However, the validation and verification meaning will sound the same, but the verification process will have a more sense of testing that results from the accurate reports by conducting the experiments. Whereas the validation will also make it more meaningful by declaring the particular statement whether it is true or false.

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    Mention Some Of The Necessary Roles That Individuals In Clinical Sas Play

    There are normally two primary parties in clinical SAS: the programmer and the clinical study team. You must show the interviewer that you understand the roles of both and how they contribute to the success of whatever Clinical SAS stands for. If you are a programmer or part of a clinical study team, mention some of the things that you are mandated within your workplace.

    Sample Answer

    There are two main characters in clinical SAS- the programmer and the clinical study team. The programmer develops programs for report formats as dictated by the regulatory authorities. They also update ISS and ISE shells when necessary.

    On the other hand, the clinical team offers necessary information on safety and efficacy findings as well as updates on the same for reporting purposes. The study statistician may also be part of this team. Their primary role is to draft ISS and ISE shells and update them when necessary. Other roles include analyzing and reporting data in approved formats and meeting periodic reporting requirements.

    Can I Request For A Support Session If I Need To Better Understand The Topics

    Intellipaat is offering 24/7 query resolution, and you can raise a ticket with the dedicated support team at any time. You can avail of email support for all your queries. If your query does not get resolved through email, we can also arrange one-on-one sessions with our support team. However, 1:1 session support is provided for a period of 6 months from the start date of your course.

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    Can One Use Proc Compare To Validate Listings

    This is a follow-up question. These usually are asked based on your previous response. It would be best to convince the interviewer that you understand the concept discussed in your previous response. This will also reveal your level of expertise.

    Sample Answer

    Yes. It is impossible to check pages manually where the entries contain many listings. PROC COMPARE will help you in such a case.

    List Down The Reasons For Choosing Sas Over Other Data Analytics Tools

    PHARMA WISDOM: Evertogen Life Sciences Ltd

    Answer: We will compare SAS with the popular alternatives in the market based on the following aspects:

    SAS over data analytics tools

    Ease of Learning SAS is easy to learn and provides an easy option for people who already know SQL.
    Data Handling Capabilities SAS is on par with all leading tools including R & Python when it comes to handling huge amount of data and options for parallel computations.
    Graphical Capabilities SAS provides functional graphical capabilities and with a little bit of learning, it is possible to customize on these plots.
    Advancements in Tool SAS releases updates in a controlled environment, hence they are well tested. R & Python, on the other hand, have an open contribution and there are chances of errors in the latest developments.
    Job Scenario Globally, SAS is the market leader in available corporate jobs. In India, SAS controls about 70% of the data analytics market share

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    State The Difference Between Using The Drop = Data Set Option In The Data Statement And Set Statement

    • The drop = data set option in the set statement is specified when both the processing and the appearance of certain variables in the new data set are undesired.
    • The drop = data set option in the data statement is specified when the processing of certain variables is desired, but its appearance in the new data set is undesired.

    What Do You Understand By Sas Documentation

    You should expect lots of questions testing your understanding of different concepts in Clinical SAS interviews. The best approach when answering such questions is to offer as much information as possible, which will convince the interviewer that you have a great understanding of what the question needs. In this case, explain to the interviewer what SAS documentation means.

    Sample Answer

    SAS documentation refers to anything typed in the program to make it easily readable and understandable. It, therefore, consists of the programmer header, titles, footnotes, comments, among many other things.

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    What Are The Different Modes Of Training That Intellipaat Provides

    At Intellipaat, you can enroll in either the instructor-led online training or self-paced training. Apart from this, Intellipaat also offers corporate training for organizations to upskill their workforce. All trainers at Intellipaat have 12+ years of relevant industry experience, and they have been actively working as consultants in the same domain, which has made them subject matter experts. Go through the sample videos to check the quality of our trainers.

    State The Difference Between Proc Means And Proc Summary

    Clinical SAS programmer Interview question 14 – Area under the curve (AUC)

    Proc SUMMARY and Proc MEANS are essentially the same methods for calculating descriptive statistics, such as mean, count, sum, median, etc. Also, it is capable of calculating several other metrics such as percentiles, quartiles, variances, standard deviations, and t-tests. N, MIN, MAX, MEAN, and STD DEV are the default statistics produced by PROC MEANS.

    • They differ mainly in the output type they produce by default. Unlike PROC SUMMARY, PROC MEANS by default prints output in the LISTING window or other open destination. When the print option is included in the Proc SUMMARY statement, the results will be printed to the output window.

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    Distinguish Between Sas Stata And Spss

    Each package offers its own unique strengths and weaknesses. As a whole, SAS, Stata, and SPSS form a set of tools that can be used for a wide variety of statistical analyses. With Stat/Transfer, it is very easy to convert data files from one package to another in just a matter of seconds or minutes.

    Therefore, there can be quite an advantage switching from one analysis package to another depending on the nature of our problem. For example, if we are performing analysis using mixed models, we might choose SAS, but if we are doing logistic regression we might choose Stata. Moreover, if we are doing an analysis of variance, then we might choose SPSS.

    If we are frequently performing statistical analysis, it is strongly recommended to consider making each one of these packages part of our toolkit for data analysis.

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