In response to the emerging need for scientists who can bring innovative skills and perspectives to problems in the hearing sciences, we will continue to build upon our well established Training Program in Comparative and Evolutionary Biology of Hearing at the University of Maryland, College Park. The 14 Core Faculty in our group bring an extraordinarily broad range of expertise, from cellular and molecular biology to systems neuroscience, and these capabilities allow us to offer a training program that not only emphasizes a comparative and evolutionary perspective to understanding the auditory system, but also does this across different levels of analysis. We propose new approaches to train the next generation of scientists who can translate knowledge and methodologies across biomedical sciences, enabling breakthroughs that cannot be achieved through work solely within a single discipline and using a single model system. The next cycle of the training program will promote a focus on translational research, in which we will continue to expand our trainees'appreciation of the biomedical applications of basic research to solving problems concerned with hearing across the human life span, including prevention, diagnosis, and genetics of hearing impairment and relevant therapeutic interventions Core Faculty are from 5 departments, biology, psychology, linguistics, hearing and speech sciences, and electrical and computer engineering. Additional adjunct and affiliate faculty from other UMD programs, as well as NIDCD and other regional institutions, work closely with the Core Faculty and provide further research and training opportunities for fellows. The Training Program includes support for 5 predoctoral and 3 postdoctoral trainees. Predoctoral trainees are generally in middle to later training where they are primarily doing research. Predoctoral support is generally for 1 to 3 years. In addition to research training, students take a course in research ethics, and seminars/courses in professional development and translational auditory science, as well as participate in all program activities. Postdoctoral trainees are supported for 1-2 years. They are required to audit the same required courses/seminars as the predoctoral fellows if they have not previously had such courses. Emphasis throughout the program is to expose trainees to the breadth of work done in the program's participating labs, and through this exposure, gain a better appreciation for the range of questions being asked and research methods applied today in the hearing sciences.
More complete knowledge of auditory system function promises both to solve some of the most perplexing and devastating problems of human health, and cement the design of systems and devices that will transform how we live. Accordingly, the CEBH Training Program will provide in-depth and interdisciplinary training in the hearing sciences that prepares individuals to advance discovery and innovation at the interface of basic science and medicine.
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