Research Training in Medical Behavioral Science

  • Andrykowski, Michael (PI)

Grants and Contracts Details


1) Summary of Current Project Year Activities The training objectives for the current reporting period (Project Year 24) are identical to those of the project as a whole. The overall objective of this research training program is to provide high-quality multidisciplinary research training in the areas of mental health and behavioral aspects of health and medical care. This training will prepare trainees to pursue professional careers in academic and scientific organizations which require a significant research commitment in these substantive areas. While the specific nature of the research training program will vary in both content and emphasis depending upon the level of the trainee (predoctoral vs. postdoctoral) and the trainee's specific research interests and preparation, the training program consists of several basic elements. These include: (1) didactic training in theory and research methods of the behavioral sciences; (2) supervised and individualized research experience; (3) exposure to multidisciplinary and biobehavioral conceptualizations of research in medical behavioral science; and (4) enculturation and orientation to mental health and health settings. All of the above elements of the training program have been successfully implemented during the current reporting period (Project Year 24). As the training program is presently in its 24thconsecutive year of existence, it is not surprising that no significant difficulties have been encountered in the implementation of the training program. As detailed below (see section C "Trainees"), all trainees have been involved in significant original research activities under the supervision and guidance of one or more members ofthe training program faculty. Many of these research activities have involved opportunities for professional publication, presentations at professional conferences, and involvement in grant preparation. Predoctoral trainees have continued to complete formal coursework for their academic degrees and have continued to complete required coursework for the Concentration in Medical Behavioral Sciences offered by the Department of Behavioral Science. Completion of the Concentration requires completion of: (a) three different semester-long courses chosen from among courses offered by faculty in the Department of Behavioral Sciences (9 credits); (b) a one-semester course in "Integrative Research Methods in Medical Behavioral Science (3 credits); and (c) a two-semester course in "Orientation to Medical Behavioral Science" (2 credits). Completion of this coursework provides didactic training in medical behavioral science theory and methods, exposure to biobehavioral conceptualizations of medical behavioral science research, and enculturation to mental health and health settings. In addition to the formal coursework described above, trainees attend the weekly colloquiumpresentations sponsored by the Department of Behavioral Sci,-ilee during the academic year. This colloquium series prov'ides additional exposure to conceptualizations of research in medical behavioral science as well as some additional enculturation and orientation to mental health and health research settings. As of July 1, 2003, the beginning of the current reporting period, 4 predoctoral and 2 postdoctoral training positions were filled. All six trainees were recruited during the fall of 2002 or the spring of 2003. All were appointed prior to July 1, 2003 and are being compensated using project year 23 (i.e., fiscal year 2002-2003) monies. Consistent with our prior experience, competition for training positions with this unique multidisciplinary program was stiff with over 20 separate applications received for the 2 available predoctoral positions and 10 applications received for the one available postdoctoral position. One additional excellent postdoctoral candidate was identified during the spring of 2003 and was appointed to the training grant beginning July 15,2003. This is Clarenda Phillips, Ph.D., a medical sociologist and an African-American. Dr. Phillips is being compensated using current project year 24 (i.e., 2003-2004) monies. As indicated above, Dr. Phillips has already accepted our offer of a second, one year appointment to the training grant. Her second years of appointment will begin July 15.2004. We have recently completed recruitment for a final postdoctoral training position. A total of 19 applications were received for this position. The position has been offered to Kimberly Kelly, Ph.D., a social psychologist with an additional master's degree in genetics counseling, and she has accepted. She will begin her appointment some July 1, 2004 and will be compensated using project year 25 (i.e., fiscal year 2004- 2005) monies. Recruitment for the predoctoral program for the 2004-2005 academic year will be initiated, as usual, in February 01'2004. Four predoctoral trainees, some of which will likely be returning trainees, will then be appointed to one year positions in June of 2004 and will be compensated using project year 24 (i.e., fiscal year 2003-2004) monies. We do not anticipate any substantive changes in the training program during the next budget period. In addition, there will be no significant changes in available space or facilities. There are two changes in the training program faculty that will take place beginning July 1, 2004. Dr. Eugene Gallagher, a sociologist and member of the training program faculty since the inception of the current training program in 1980, has recently retired. We have added Joe Gaugler, Ph.D., to the training program faculty. Dr. Gaugler is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Behavioral Science with extensive research expertise in the mental health implications of caregiving for both elderly individuals and individuals diagnoses with cancer. We have included an NIH-format biosketch for Dr. Gaugler. This biosketch can be found beginning on p. 4. 2) Training in Responsible Conduct of Research Training in the responsible conduct of research is furnished to all trainees. In addition to instruction and guidance in the responsible conduct of research involving human subjects, trainees receive guidance and instruction in the ethics of being a research scientist. In both cases, ethics instruction occurs formally through required coursework and informally in the course of the each trainee's involvement in the research process. Regarding formal instruction in ethics, all predoctoral trainees are required to take a one-semester course in "Integrative Research Methods in Medical Behavioral Science." Two of the fourteen weeks of the course, approximately six classroom hours, are devoted exclusively to the study of research and scientific ethics. This two week portion of the course is taught by the Director of the NIMH research training program, Michael Andrykowski, Ph.D. Dr. Andrykowski is an experienced research scientist and a veteran of six years of s~rvice on the Medical Institutional Review Board at the University of Kentucky, including a stint as vice chair. He has also met formal NIH requirements for certification in the responsible conduct of rese
Effective start/end date7/1/046/30/06


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