Training Programs

Advanced Research Training Programs

The following programs provide financial support to pre and/or post-doctoral trainees to allow them to concentrate on developing both the range and depth of skills necessary to become productive scientists in the field of intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Training Researchers in Language Impairments (Pre-doctoral)

There is a great need for researchers in communication disorders trained in language impairments. The proposed competing continuation would continue to provide predoctoral cross-disciplinary research training as well as preparation for research and teaching careers addressing language impairments from a lifespan orientation. These areas of expertise appear in academic departments of communication disorders, cognitive neuroscience, linguistics, human development, psychology, geriatrics, and cognitive science. Five predoctoral trainees are requested for 2-3 years of support per trainee. It is expected that trainees will be drawn primarily from current doctoral students in child language, communication disorders, linguistics, or psychology. Program faculty include eight experienced, productive researchers who direct active research laboratories. These faculty have related interests as well as a track record of collaborative endeavors. Trainees will enroll in a cross-disciplinary curriculum of academic offerings in content courses, research methods and design, and responsible conduct of research. Each trainee will participate in primary and secondary level research experiences. The primary research participation will be a multi-year apprenticeship that takes place in a laboratory headed by one of the program faculty. A secondary, short-term research experience will be carried out under the direction of a second faculty member. Faculty and peer mentoring will be recognized as important dimensions of the research training experience. A peer mentoring group will be continued, and serve as a source of feedback to the faculty. The climate for scholarship includes a wide variety of scholarly activities, including participation with trainees from other disciplines, access to visiting scholars, and participation in the ongoing series of seminars and workshops sponsored by the Merrill Advanced Studies Center and the Institute for Life Span Studies. Preparation of research posters, talks, scientific papers and an F31 application is expected. The training addresses a major public health need in the development of scientific expertise to guide the remediation of language impairments.

Please contact Dr. Mabel Rice for more information.

Neurological and Rehabilitation Sciences (Pre-doctoral)

The goal of the Kansas University Training Program in Neurological and Rehabilitation Sciences is to provide predoctoral interdisciplinary training in translational research in basic and clinical aspects of neuroscience, especially as it applies to neurological conditions amenable to rehabilitative treatments. The interdisciplinary nature of this program is unique in that basic science trainees will have the opportunity to participate in clinical aspects of neurological disorders, and clinical trainees will be provided with valuable basic scientific insights and technical experience in neurobiological mechanisms. The program derives expertise from both basic and clinical research to cross-fertilize research experiences of the individual trainees. Didactic training will include core curricula for predoctoral students in the Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Biomedical Science, the Graduate Programs in Neuroscience or the Graduate Program in Rehabilitation Science, providing a firm groundwork for understanding basic genetic, molecular and cellular mechanisms. Short-term, summer training experiences will be offered to medical and allied health students, providing experience with the complex interdisciplinary models that will be necessary for the next generation of therapeutic approaches in neurorehabilitation. The faculty includes 23 basic and clinical mentors, and an additional 19 teaching faculty who are located within 10 Departments and two Schools of the Kansas University Medical Center. The strength of this group is the expertise and caliber of research faculty, the outstanding research infrastructure, the focus on translating basic neuroscientific principles to bear on neurological conditions, and the desire of both scientists and clinicians to collaborate in the interdisciplinary training of students. Laboratory research and apprenticeships, courses, seminars, guest lectures, journal clubs, data sessions, and poster presentations will be utilized to ensure frequent interaction of the trainees and faculty. The recruitment and selection of trainees will be coordinated through an Internal Advisory Committee, with input from all participating faculty. In addition, the program will be monitored by an External Advisory Committee, composed of national leaders in graduate training in neuroscience and rehabilitation science. Complex medical conditions such as those that result from brain injury require a new approach to understanding and treating patients based on interdisciplinary workgroups of scientists and clinicians. This program will train young scientists to work in research teams that address the basic mechanisms of brain recovery and repair in the context of real-world relevance and feasibility.

Please contact Dr. Randy Nudo for more information.

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