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Student Research

Research and scholarly activity are central pillars of inquiry-driven medical student education and professional development at Feinberg. All medical students at NUFSM (except for MD/PhD and MD/MPH students, who complete alternative projects) complete an independent Area of Scholarly Concentration (AOSC) project, which provides a practical, closely mentored opportunity for scholarly skills development and often results in peer-reviewed publications. Complementing the AOSC curriculum and project, our competitive Research Intensive Scholarly Emphasis (RISE) program provides the opportunity for students (MD, MD/MA and MD/MPH) to spend an extra, funded year of mentored research during their training. Research projects for AOSC and RISE include a variety of fields and settings, including the laboratory, community, and clinic. We expect some AOSC projects will naturally result in a mentor/mentee relationship for RISE, while other RISE projects will be new. Either pathway is encouraged.

The purpose of this website is to orient current and prospective students and mentors on the logistics of AOSC and RISE, and to provide practical resources that assist students in conceptualizing and completing their research projects.

Area of Scholarly Concentration (AOSC)

The AOSC program at Feinberg is a pillar of the curriculum leading to the MD degree. AOSC projects enhance the students' ability to identify knowledge gaps in science and medicine and to pursue solutions to challenges in the field. AOSC projects are hypothesis-driven, longitudinal projects with a focused, detailed design appropriate for the specific area of study.

The goals of the AOSC program include the design and performance of an inquiry driven, highly individualized scholarly project that culminates in the submission of a formal thesis or a first-authored manuscript to a peer-reviewed journal. 

Research Intensive Scholarly Emphasis (RISE)

The RISE program provides an opportunity for students to apply for a fully funded independent research year to perform research in a closely mentored environment overseen by experienced,
productive faculty investigator-mentors. Applications briefly outline the student's proposed area of research and their long-term plans as a developing clinician-scientist; prior research
accomplishment is not required to be competitive for RISE. Once accepted into RISE, students are provided with intensive assistance in preparing for their research year and with RISE-specific events
meant to further integrate the student into the research community and promote their research.
Learn more about Rise
presentation slide showing medical student research output for the class of 2022