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AOSC Graduation Requirements, Conference Travel, Poster Printing, and Research Electives

AOSC Graduation Requirements

All MD students - excluding dual degree (MD/MPH, MD/MA, and MSTP) students - are required to fulfill their AOSC graduation requirement as part of their curriculum. This requirement is fulfilled by either (1) an eligible first-author manuscript submitted to a PubMed-indexed journal (requirement fulfilled on submission even if the article is not accepted); or (2) a thesis which substitutes for the first-author paper requirement. Eligible first author papers must have been written based on research performed during medical school, and are not required to derive from a student's declared AOSC project. Eligible first-author paper formats include original research (including brief reports and research letters if original research), systematic reviews, scoping reviews, or humanities analytical/narrative pieces submitted for publication. We encourage students to consider submitting even "null" results from their research, as several journals including open access ones (such as PLOS One and Nature Scientific Reports) primarily review articles based on validity rather than significance of findings. Northwestern also offers funding for such open access journals. As a substitute for a submitted first author paper, students can submit a thesis (see the thesis template).

Conference Attendance

Please note:

  • You may attend either a virtual or in-person conference to present your first author research
  • You are eligible for the stipend to present any first author research, whether or not it is your AOSC project
  • You are eligible to receive the stipend for ONE conference during your tenure at FSM. There are no exceptions.
  • International conferences will not be approved, virtual or otherwise. There are no exceptions.

Attendance for first-author presentations to a national, regional, or local conference must be authorized in advance by Student Research Director Matt Feinstein, MD. To start that process, please complete a Conference Attendance Request form. Once your form is submitted, it will be sent to Liza Rivnay (Student Research Program Manager), who will communicate your request to Matt Feinstein and advise you of the status of your request.

We ask all applying students to submit their conference attendance request form 6-8 weeks ahead of the conference start date. When filling out the request form, please indicate the registration fee due date (early bird, if offered, or standard) in the field labeled “Will this conference be co-supported by another department?”

Once your virtual conference attendance is approved, Liza Rivnay will notify you and Jenny Dick (Program Assistant at AWOME).  Jenny will utilize the University procurement card to register you for the conference.  This means you will not incur an out-of-pocket expense (request for reimbursement will not be needed/honored). Jenny will reach out to you regarding additional information, whether an in-person visit to the AWOME is needed, and arrange for payment of the registration fee.

Registration coverage is available for AOSC, MD/MPH, MD/MA and MD/MS students. 

Approval from Matt Feinstein is solely for the purpose of having your registration fee(s) covered and does not grant permission for being absent from class or on a rotation. This must be independently obtained by the student.  Students will be excused from a required session(s) for their scheduled date of presentation only. Please provide written notification of your presentation date to Coordinator for Student SupportAllison Matricaria.

Any additional day(s) for attendance will require use of personal day(s). If you will be missing a required session(s), please email that information to Allison Matricaria to request the absence.

Poster Printing

To print your poster, please place an order with Quartet Digital Printing
Please email Liza Rivnay to get the chart string. For security purposes, we cannot post it here.
We recommend that you print your poster as soon as it is finalized in order to not run into any delays, ideally a few weeks before your conference as the queue can be long.
Once you receive a receipt from Quarter Digital Printing, please send it to Liza Rivnay and Suzanne Hodges. 

Research Elective Guidelines

Students may obtain elective credit for both AOSC and non-AOSC research. Total elective credit for research (AOSC-related and non-AOSC) must not exceed 12 weeks. Students may do up to one month of research in two-week blocks (i.e., a total of two, non-contiguous two-week blocks is allowed). All other research electives must be taken in at least one-month blocks. Flex time can always be used to conduct research (including one week at a time). 

All requests for research electives must be approved by a student’s research mentor and submitted to AWOME for final approval before an elective can be scheduled. A separate form must be filled out for each non-contiguous research block. 

To schedule and receive credit for a research elective, fill out the Research Elective Request form and attest that you have reviewed the contents of the form with your research mentor and they approve. You can view a PDF worksheet of the Research Elective Form. The completed form should be submitted for approval by the Director of Student Research at least two weeks prior to starting the research block. You may not request elective credit for research time retroactively. Once your elective request is approved, the registrar will be informed and the research elective will be added to your schedule in OASIS in the block you requested.