Research Curriculum

Comprehensive Introduction to Clinical Research

The structured research curriculum trains residents in the basic methodology of clinical research and study design. Residents who would like to pursue patient-oriented clinical investigation and research projects are encouraged to apply for this four-week course offered during the PGY-2 year. 

The ClinEpi course trains residents in the basic methodology of clinical research and study design, including clinical research methods in epidemiology, biostatistics, and database management. The course is designed for junior residents who are interested in pursuing a clinical research career and do not have previous research methods training (e.g. MPH). This course is directed by  C. Barrett Bowling, MD, MSPH, associate professor of medicine in the Division of Geriatrics.

ClinEpi teaches residents about the process of clinical research. Residents also learn about basic biostatistics, including database establishment, descriptive statistics, graphical display of data, simple hypothesis testing, categorical data analysis, sample-size estimation, and introductory regression analysis. Additionally, faculty from a variety of disciplines teach afternoon sessions devoted to clinical epidemiology research methods.

Course participants learn to critically appraise the literature when reading cohort, case-control, randomized controlled, or cross-over trials. Instruction in advanced computer-based literature searches, preparation of a research proposal budget, legal and ethical issues in clinical research, and scientific writing supplements this training. During the ClinEpi course, each trainee must design a clinical research project to be reviewed by the ClinEpi faculty. Many trainees use their project as the basis for subsequent patient-oriented research.

Physician Scientist and Clinical Investigator Training

The Department of Medicine encourages applications from individuals who plan academic careers as physician scientists and clinical investigators. The career development of these physicians is a major priority for our Department and residency training program. That’s why we offer the American Board of Internal MedicineResearch Pathway option for ABIM certification.
Residents interested in this program will receive the advice and support of the Program Leadership, including Associate Program Director for Curriculum and Resident Research, Dr. Murat O. Arcasoy, and the Program Director, Dr. Aimee K. Zaas. Residents interested in this program do not need to apply under a separate match number.
The ABIM research pathway is designed for residents committed to careers as physician scientists with an emphasis on laboratory investigation. There is no limit to the number of residents who can participate in the program. These residents typically have either Ph.D. degrees or significant previous experience in the laboratory setting. Most important, however, is that trainees in this program made clear comittments to careers in fundamental research. Many previous participants in this program have already emerged as national and international leaders in biomedical research.

Like other residents, residents in the ABIM research pathway will complete 24 months of clinical training in internal medicine with at least 20 months of direct patient responsibility. The option of two additional years of clinical internal medicine training requires demonstration of clinical competence and the approval of the program director. If residents plan subspecialty fellowship training, they will apply for fellowship during the second year of residency. Residents often complete their subspecialty clinical training immediately after the first two years of residency, but the fellowship program director ultimately decides the timing. Subspecialty clinical training lasts from 12 to 24 months depending on the choice of subspecialty.
The ABIM Research Pathway includes 36 months of research training, and 80 percent of time must be devoted to research. Up to 20 percent of each year may be spent in clinical work. Fellows will develop their plans for research training in consultation with the fellowship program director and their research mentors. By the end of this research training period, fellows should be ready to apply for funding such as theMentored Clinical Scientist Development Award (K08).

Research conferences

The Clinical Implications of Basic Research / Mechanisms of Disease Series and Department of Medicine Research Seminar both feature faculty research from throughout the department.

See the Research Seminar page for more details.