School of Medicine Student Research and Scholarship
The School of Medicine integrated curriculum provides opportunities for research and scholarship. The purpose is to promote medical students' independent investigation through the different phases of medical education, and to provide students an opportunity to define themselves through a portfolio of investigative experiences. The choice of a research project is to be selected based on each individual student's interests.
- Define one or more questions that guide your research.
- Work on a health care related project that includes a research component and leads to creation of new or markedly improved knowledge (scientific, clinical or educational) or innovation (clinical device, computer program, therapy or treatment approach).
- Present the rationale and results of your research to others.
- Effectively answer questions about your research.
Areas in which Scholarly Activity projects may be conducted
- Clinical Device
- Computer Program
- Public Health
- Quality Improvement
- Therapy or treatment approach
1. Identify a focus for your research; consider which areas of medicine most interest you
2. Identify a project mentor; your mentor can be anyone who has the expertise and skills to guide you in completing your project; your mentor does not have to be a UU Health Sciences faculty member.
Your project should include:
- Identifying a research question
- Reading background information related to your project
- Gathering data; for example, conducting experiments or surveys, or extracting data from databases
- Analyzing and interpreting the data you have collected
3. Complete your project with your mentor.
4. Present your project in one of the following ways. The objective is for you to prepare your research for presentation to others and to respond to questions about your research.
- Give an oral or poster presentation at a scholarly venue (you must be the presenter); all students are welcome to present a poster at the Medical Student Scholarly Activity Symposium, held each year.
- Be the first or second author listed on a published paper or manuscript accepted for publication.
5. Submit a draft of a short paragraph summarizing your research for the Scholarly Activity section of your MSPE letter.
Earning Elective Credit for Scholarly Activity
Students may register for and receive elective credit for their Scholarly Activity research. Some departments or divisions offer research credit. This credit may be available to students in any year of medical school or only for MS4 students. Check with your faculty mentor's department or division to find out if research credit is offered.
Programs That Support Student Research and Innovation
The following programs provide research opportunities for students:
Programs at the University of Utah
This program is a 10-week summer research program between MS1 and MS2 that provides a stipend for participating students. It is funded by NIH T35 grants; supports projects related to:
- Heart, lung and blood (NHLBI)
- Diabetes, metabolism, digestive and kidney diseases (NIDDK)
- Eye health and disease (NEI)
- Application information
- Approved mentors
American Academy of Neurology Medical Student Summer Research Scholarship; contact Dr. David Renner
Medical Student Training in Aging Research; contact Dr. Mark Supiano
Public Health; contact Dr. Jessica Greenwood
Programs at Other Institutions
Anthea Letsou, PhD is a professor in the Department of Human Genetics and a member of the Workforce Development faculty in the Center for Clinical and Translational Research.
Albert Park, MD is the chief for Pediatric Otolaryngology at the University of Utah. He is the principal investigator for an NIH funded multi-institutional clinical trial to determine whether the antiviral drug, valganciclovir can improve hearing outcomes for children with cytomegalovirus (CMV), a very common and understudied cause of childhood hearing loss.