Research Elective

A written proposal for what is to be accomplished during this elective must be generated prior to starting, such that the fellow will gain the experience of designing an experiment.  During the elective, the fellow will learn and practice the scientific method and rigorous scientific technique while carrying out their project/experiment.  Techniques learned may include laboratory skills (molecular and genetic studies, animal experiments, chemical/biochemical experiments, etc.) or clinical research skills (clinical trial methodology, epidemiology, biostatistics, etc.).  Ideally, the fellow’s work will result in authorship on manuscript(s) or abstract(s).  Fellows will learn about the informed consent process and develop an understanding of HIPAA’s impact upon clinical research. In accordance with NIH Clinical Research standards, any fellow participating in clinical research will be required to participate in Human Subjects Protection training (obtaining a Certificate of Completion for Web Based Course on Protection of Human Research Subjects).

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ACGME Competency Goals

Patient Care

Learn how to contribute to the understanding of the pathophysiology of neurologic disease and/or the development of novel treatments.

Patient care may be developed in clinical research projects.  Fellows will learn to care for patients within the confines of a clinical research study if applicable.

Medical knowledge

Build a broad and deep knowledge base in a research topic relevant to the pathophysiology of neurologic disease and/or the development of novel treatments.

Medical knowledge will be obtained through background literature review in the research topic of interest.  Fellows will develop practical knowledge of statistical analyses.

Interpersonal Communication

Present scientific data and peer-review, ideally via submission of one abstract or manuscript during the course of training.

Good communication with other researchers is necessary for collaboration in research.  The fellow will learn how to obtain informed consent, enroll the patients, and communicate with regulatory personnel.

Practice-Based Learning and Improvement

Identify ways to improve scientific practice.

The fellow will be responsible for working with supervisory staff and co-participants in troubleshooting the methods of the proposed research.


The fellows will demonstrate ongoing self-education and habits of life-long learning.

Fellows will maintain the highest standards of professionalism, especially in interactions with patients or with other research colleagues.  The fellow will be responsible for tracking duty hours and reporting them to the supervisory attending.

Systems-Based Practice

The fellows recognize that he/she is part of a research team.
The fellows develop knowledge for regulatory guidelines in basic, translational and clinical research.

Research requires absolute compliance with regulatory guidelines such as HIPAA for patient based research and animal safety regulations for basic science research.  The fellows will learn how to complete projects within this regulatory environment.

Objectives and Evaluation Matrix

As with all of the individual rotations described in this section, the specific objectives of the continuity clinic are reflected in the entrustable professional activities and individual milestones. These form the basis for the fellow’s evaluation, which is completed by his or her clinic attending twice each year. (Please see the section End-of-Rotation Evaluations above for the list of milestone abbreviations).

Research Attributes

Upon completion of the curriculum, the fellow will…

EPA #New EPA DescriptionMilestones
1Remain reliable and committed to project completion/diligencePL2, PR1, PR2
2Independence– Ability to use current knowledge to solve surmountable problems before asking for help– aptitude for “figuring things out”PL1, PL2, PR3
3Communication– Provides clear and accurate verbal and written communicationIC4, IC5
4Teamwork– Ability to work with others cooperatively and productivelyIC4
5Demonstrates research integrity, honesty, trustworthinessPR1, PR2
6Data management– Demonstrates appreciation for details, keeping of records, and accuracyPL1, PR2 IC5
7Data analysis and interpretation–  Demonstrates a sophistication of analytic methods and conclusions drawn from analysesPL1
8Research aptitude– Ability to read and digest literature, develop important questions, and create plans for testing hypothesesPL1

Latest revision: 10/28/2022, Aaron Struck, MD

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