For psychiatry residents who are committed to developing careers as physician-scientists, the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences offers a Psychiatry Resident Research Program funded by a National Institute of Mental Health R25 grant. The research program provides career and research mentoring and maximizes time for research while allowing trainees to complete all ACGME-required clinical rotations. Opportunities for participation are available during all four years of training and are integrated with resources across the institution.
The psychiatry program is affiliated with Northwestern's institutional Physician Scientist Training Program (PSTP), which includes multiple departments (e.g., Internal Medicine, Surgery, Neurology, Urology, Radiology and Pediatrics). Participants in our program will be able to interact monthly with participants in these programs and have access to institutional PSTP resources. Northwestern is proud to have multiple residency programs participating in PSTP and is dedicated to producing high-caliber physicians to develop academic research careers.
The program structure enables trainees to complete all ACGME-required clinical rotations while obtaining the specialized training to succeed as a physician-scientist.
- PGY-1 to PGY-2: During the first two years of residency, trainees identify career and research mentors and create an individualized development plan and research proposal. Participants have elective time during PGY-1 (10 percent) and PGY-2 (20 percent) to gain experience and exposure in their area of interest and to develop their plans for the PGY3-4 years.
- PGY-3: Research residents devote 40-50 percent of their time to research, and their clinical experiences align with their research area of interest. The program is flexible so that it may adapt to meet the research needs of the trainee during this year.
- PGY-4: Research residents devote 60-70 percent of their time to research and engage in longitudinal clinics that support their research.
- Trainees attend a monthly research seminar series that supports psychiatry residents with research interests in developing skills in research design and presentation, networking, and manuscript and grant preparation. Research program residents also receive supplemental funds for travel to attend meetings, publication costs and supplies. All psychiatry residents in the research program take the Responsible Conduct of Research course. Additional specialized didactic training is available to meet the specific needs of individual research track residents. Overall, the Psychiatry Resident Research Program is flexible and designed to adapt to meet the research needs of the trainee.
There are unique resources at Northwestern that are available to individuals in the PSTP:
- Master’s of Science in Clinical Investigation (MSCI)
This master’s program provides formal education in clinical research and was initiated by support from a K30 NIH roadmap grant. It covers courses in biostatistics, data science, epidemiology, research methods and grant/ scientific paper writing. Individual courses are available to supplement training without obtaining a full master’s degree.
- Northwestern University Center for Translational Science (NUCATS)
NUCATS provides investigators with valuable resources and consultation services, including clinical research support, consultations to aid interdisciplinary research, access to the enterprise data warehouse and research electronic data system, and assistance with research study design.
Any applicants interested in applying to the PSTP in Psychiatry should apply via the NRMP match position via the McGaw Medical Center of Northwestern University. We recommend that one letter of recommendation is from a principal research mentor and encourage a second letter from an individual familiar with their research.