The Pilot Project Core of the UAB Roybal Center is designed to foster and facilitate the selection, development and execution of pilot projects which will contribute to the overall theme of the Center. Specifically, these projects will consit of preliminary studies, with the long-range goal of applying the theories, paradigms, and methodology of the behavioral and social sciences to improve the day-to-day function of middle-aged and older adults experiencing physical, sensory, and/or cognitive decline. Pilot projects are expected to lead to the develoment of more highly developed research projects (e.g., NIH ROIs, R03s, K-awards etc., VA Merit awards;private sector support) with the primary aim of obtaining information that can be translated into real solutions for older individuals. Pilot projects can assume a variety of formats, such as pilot studies on a preliminary hypothesis, descriptive studies to explore associations between functional impairments and everyday outcomes, and feasibility studies to establish the credibility of a research approach or a methodology. Even though pilot projects represent the earliest steps in developing a research idea, they should be consistent with the Roybal Center's emphasis on research translation from basic research to practical positive outcome for older adults'health and well-being. The Pilot Project Core will be directed by the Co-Director, Dr. Cynthia Owsley, with the assitance of the Assistant Director of the Center, Dr. Michael Crowe. Two to five pilot projects will be selected for funding each year. A call for applications will be issued through campus mail, the campus newspaper, electronic mail, and other dissemination outlets. Applications will be reviewed by relevant experts for scientific merit and programmatic relevance to the Center. The Pilot Project Core will be systematically evaluated by examining the extent to which each project contributes to the scientific literature, generates data useful in the design and funding of future research studies, and leads to the eventual transfer of research findings to improve the daily function of older adults.
The Pilot Project Core is fundamental to the success of the UAB Roybal Center as it brings new ideas into the pipeline and permits a feasability evaluation for new potential solutions to improve or prevent decline in everyday function of older adults.
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