The objective of the Short-Term Research Training Program for AuD Students at Boys Town National Research Hospital (BTNRH) is to provide a 3-month, full-time, hands-on translational research experience in the hearing sciences to five predoctoral AuD students per year. The need for this program is motivated by a shortage of audiologists who engage in research careers. By exposing AuD students to an intensive research experience, we have a unique opportunity to encourage AuD students to consider a PhD or otherwise pursue clinical/translational research careers. For this program, each trainee will be involved in all aspects of a research project, working in one of 14 BTNRH laboratories currently conducting translational research related to audiology. Most of the 14 laboratory directors have extramural support, mainly from the NIDCD in the form of R01 and R03 grants. Trainees will work with BTNRH faculty mentors who have extensive experience working in a clinically oriented, multidisciplinary research environment. The primary research experience will include (1) completion of a research project that includes the design, implementation, data collection, and analyses for the study; (2) reporting of results of the research project at the American Auditory Society meeting the following spring; (3) mandatory participation in a course in responsible conduct in research; (4) participation in weekly journal groups; (5) attendance at seminars and colloquia; and (6) informal discussions with members of the research faculty, in addition to frequent interactions with each trainee?s mentor. Prior to research participation, trainees will complete the CITI training course related to research involving human as participants. During the program, trainees will be exposed to a wide range of laboratories, in addition to the one in which they are primarily assigned. Trainees will be able to utilize support services that include cores devoted to subject recruitment, laboratory computing, and statistical analyses. T35 trainees will benefit from the experience of BTNRH faculty who have mentored postdoctoral fellows (as part of our T32 training program), provided research training to AuD and PhD students from various universities, and mentored AuD trainees who participated in the past nine years of the T35 program. T35 trainees will be recruited from AuD programs nationally, with special efforts to identify and recruit trainees from under-represented populations. Several measures will be used to assess the program?s success including (1) the number and quality of applications received, (2) exit questionnaires completed by each trainee, (3) questionnaires sent to AuD program directors regarding the impact of the T35 traineeship on their students, (4) the number of publications resulting from each traineeship, (5) the number of trainees who go on to pursue a PhD in preparation for a career in research, and (6) the number of trainees who obtain positions in which research is emphasized.
The purpose of this training program is to provide a short-term, intensive research experience in the hearing sciences for audiology doctoral (AuD) students. The overarching goal is to encourage AuD students to consider a PhD or otherwise pursue clinical/translational research careers so that we can address the shortage of clinician-scientists in the field. Regardless of the trainees? eventual career choice, the research experience obtained through this training program will enhance clinical service delivery to the approximately 30 million individuals in the United States with hearing loss.
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