The aim of our multidisciplinary program is to train post-doctoral biomedical, behavioral, health care and other public health scientists to conduct research on treatment and early interventions for alcohol abuse and alcoholism. An overarching goal is to enhance the scientific reasoning skills needed to advance treatment research in alcohol abuse. From our perspective such research will benefit from interventions guided by sophisticated and fully developed theory using a multidisciplinary framework that includes the biological, psychological, social and cultural context in which interventions occur. While other institutional training programs may address treatment/early intervention research, this is the primary mission for this program. Distinctive features of our training program are: that it is interdisciplinary;that it embraces no single ideology or theory concerning the nature of dysfunctions related to alcohol or drug abuse;that it provides training in early intervention and treatment along a continuum;and that it provides trainees with highly individualized opportunities to develop competitive grant applications and by doing so, contribute to the knowledge base of alcohol-related dysfunction. The training experience is structured to provide individualized research experience and training, complemented by a common academic curriculum to which 20% of fellows'training time is allocated. Four distinct areas are covered in the curriculum: (1) statistics/research methodology;(2) grantsmanship;(3) ethical issues in research;and (4) a two-year series of alcohol-specific seminars. We subscribe to a research apprenticeship model under the guidance of the mentor. The fellow's individual research training experience emerges from a plan developed by the fellow and agreed to by his/her mentors. The program has a primary emphasis on training in clinical trials with a secondary emphasis on the translation of clinical research into services research. The recent addition of neurobiology and behavioral genetics didactic and research experiences expands our focus of translational research from basic to clinical research to dissemination. The expected training program is typically two years but on occasion we extend this training period to three years. We offer 3rd years for fellows with less extensive training in research methods;fellows who are cross- training, e.g. training in Behavioral Genetics for a clinical psychologist;or for fellows in each cohort who need more time to accomplish their goals of becoming independent investigators. The program accepts on average 4-5 new fellows per year. At any given time there are likely to be 9-10 fellows in residence.
Alcohol abuse, alcohol use disorders, and alcoholism are significant public health problems. This training program is designed to train postdoctoral biomedical, biobehavioral, health care and other public health scientists to conduct alcohol treatment research to inform the next generation of applied treatments.
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