The UAB Psychiatry Residency Research Track (RRT) offers a wide range of research opportunities for residents interested in pursuing a research career as physician scientist. Research-track residents are presented with substantial hands-on clinical, basic and translational neuroscience research experiences during their psychiatry training. RRT provides integrated research and clinical training experiences to equip residents with the theoretical knowledge and skills necessary for a successful research career in academic psychiatry. The program is designed to provide residents with specialized research training while also meeting the educational goals of general psychiatry training.

Application Process 

Application is typically made in the first year of residency training. However, residents may apply at any point during their training. The application must include – (1) a curriculum vitae, (2) a statement of interest (3) a letter of support from the resident’s mentor and, (4) an outline of the research project.

What to Expect

The research track diverges from the general track in second year. Service requirements are reduced in a manner to allow significant portions of time to pursue research. Protected time during second year is available as a block of up to two months. Protected time during third and fourth year can be scheduled in blocks (basic science research) or as a longitudinal experience (translational or clinical research). Residents broaden their experience through didactic lectures, practical workshops on biostatistics, grant writing and manuscript writing and direct involvement in ongoing research projects under the guidance and mentorship of a senior investigator. Ongoing support and guidance from faculty leaders and scientific mentors provide a rich, supportive learning environment for residents’ as they progress through the program.

PGY-I
PGY-I year residents broaden their knowledge of current research projects and research-based initiatives within the department and learn how to integrate their research identity into a clinical identity to support the process of identifying a research interest and mentor. Residents attend research track meetings and research day, meet with potential research mentors and the RRT director for feedback and guidance.

PGY-II
The focus of PGY-II is to establish a relationship with their identified mentor and to get actively involved in a research project. Residents attend research track meetings and research day, regularly meet with their mentor and participate in lab meetings. Institutional support includes up to two months of protected time for research related activities.

PGY-III
Residents are fully engaged in project design and implementation while building a foundational knowledge of methodologies, statistical approaches, and data presentation. Residents attend research track meetings, present a poster at research day, regularly meet with their mentor and participate in their lab meetings. Institutional support includes up to 20% protected time for research related activities and protected time for research track meetings and research day.

PGY-IV
The focus of PGY-IV is to complete the research track project, prepare and submit the results for publication, and present their project at Grand Rounds. Residents continue participating in lab meetings, meet with their research mentor on a monthly basis, attend research track meetings, present their work at national meetings and apply for travel fellowships. Institutional support includes up to 80% protected time for research related activities and protected time for research track meetings and research day.