The purpose and objectives of this training grant are to provide training in alcohol research for pre and postdoctoral trainees in psychology and related disciplines. This training program has been successfully producing skilled alcohol research scholars for the past 29 years. The training program provides quality research training in the combined areas of etiology, prevention, and treatment of alcohol use disorders. Alcohol research training is approached from both psychosocial and biobehavioral perspectives. Psychology is in a unique position to provide this combined emphasis as the field encompasses a number of specialty areas that bear directly on the study of alcohol. The training faculty participating in the proposed program includes representatives from each of these specialty areas. The principal focus of this training program is alcohol research training in psychology at the University of Washington. Eleven core and ten additional faculty, all with primary or adjunct appointments in the Departments of Psychiatry and/or Psychology, will provide apprenticeship training and research supervision for trainees. Funds are requested to support 5 postdoctoral and 3 predoctoral trainees each year. Trainees will participate in the required Addictive Behaviors Core curriculum, which involves a series of courses and seminars in the field of alcohol and addiction research, as well as a grantsmanship/career development seminar designed to promote the transition to independence. Predoctoral trainees are also required to complete a core curriculum consistent with departmental requirements for a Ph.D. Required courses include: (1) statistics and general methodology, (2) a major area of study in clinical, physiological, developmental, experimental, behavioral neuroscience, animal behavior, or health psychology, or closely related areas approved by the training faculty;(3) breadth requirements intended to assure broad exposure to other areas of psychology, and (4) out of area coursework relevant to the study of alcohol use disorders and addictive behaviors. Trainees in the course of the program will be expected to (a) acquire research methodologies relevant to the alcohol field with both human and animal subjects;and (b) apply such skills and knowledge in the design and execution of both basic and applied research related to the etiology, prevention, and treatment of alcohol abuse and dependence.
This program will allow trainees to gain the knowledge and skills needed to (1) research the causes of alcohol misuse and alcohol use disorders, involving both animal and human research studies, and (2) develop effective assessment, prevention and intervention approaches for alcohol use disorders. Annual costs of alcohol abuse in the US are estimated to be $224 billion. Effective prevention and treatment strategies are desperately needed, and training the next generation of scientists will ensure continued progress toward this objective.
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