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Clinical Research

Research Overview

  • Research is viewed as an integral aspect of graduate training and a key focus of the Clinical Science area. Students choose an advisory committee of faculty members who will guide them in selecting a variety of research experiences throughout their training. These experiences will develop the necessary conceptual, methodological, and analytical skills used in designing and executing research. Students will be expected to demonstrate initiative in doing research. The ultimate goal is to attain the ability to conduct research in an independent and confident manner.
  • As a research-oriented program, we have the firm expectation that students will consistently present and publish their work. Different standards of research productivity pertain to different years in the program.
  • During the first year, students are assigned to a faculty research advisor who will assist in research opportunities.
  • Prior to the completion of 12 semester hours, students are required to form a three-member advisory master's thesis committee. This committee will help the student formulate a research project that culminates in the award of the M.S. degree. Completion of a master's thesis research project is required prior to being admitted onto the preliminary examination for the doctoral dissertation.
  • Upon approval of continuation onto the preliminary examination and doctoral program, a new four-member faculty advisory committee is formed and becomes responsible for guiding the student's preliminary exam. The preliminary exam typically consists of a conceptual and analytical paper in the student's major area of interest and should be of publishable quality.
  • Before completing 12 hours of coursework beyond the master's degree and following successful completion of the preliminary examination, the student must form the four-member faculty advisory committee responsible for guiding their doctoral dissertation research. The doctoral advisory committee need not be composed of the same faculty members who were involved in the M.S. thesis committee.
  • By the time the student is ready to begin work on their dissertation research, it is expected that they will have some definite ideas regarding their research interests and will have obtained the support of a faculty member who shares the same research interests.
  • The student must successfully propose the dissertation prospectus before applying for predoctoral internship placement; the student is expected to complete all data collection prior to going on the internship.
  • It is expected that students will be able to articulate a program of research to successfully start their careers as clinical scientists.