Postdoctoral Mentored Training Program in Clinical Investigation (MTPCI)

The Clinical Research Training Center (CRTC) Postdoctoral Mentored Training Program in Clinical Investigation (MTPCI) provides multidisciplinary clinical and translational research training to promote the career development of junior faculty and postdoctoral fellows by helping them become clinical and translational researchers.

Through didactic coursework, structured mentorship, and interactions with a diverse peer group of trainees, the Postdoctoral MTPCI enables Scholars to learn how to:

  • Develop effective research projects
  • Utilize human subjects in clinical trials
  • Collect, analyze, and summarize data
  • Apply epidemiologic principles and tools
  • Consider relevant ethical and legal issues
  • Write grants and manuscripts
  • Compete for research funding

The MTPCI Fall application cycle runs from September 15th – November  1st for a January start date. The  MTPCI Spring application cycle runs from January 1st – April 17th for a July start date.

Program Leadership:

Email Us:  Postdoctoral MTPCI Inquiries » 

Benefits

Protected Research Time

A minimum of 60% protected time must be guaranteed by each MTPCI scholar’s department. Surgeons may only be allowed 50% protected research time.

Tuition

Some small tuition assistance grants covering part of one or two classes may be available for the required, graduate-level coursework. The application cycle for these grants typically opens in fall.

Participation in the Clinical Research Training Center (CRTC) MTPCI may count toward the requirements of the NIH Loan Repayment Program (LRP).

Clinical Research Training Center (CRTC)

MTPCI scholars have access to the Clinical Research Training Center. The CRTC provides computer labs, break-out rooms, a classroom, poster printing, and administrative office suites.

Program Requirements

Continuation in the Postdoctoral Mentored Training Program in Clinical Investigation (MTPCI) is determined yearly based upon satisfactory research progress, professional effort, academic grades, attendance and participation in CRTC events.

Professional Effort

Unless other terms have been negotiated prior to matriculation into the program, Postdoctoral MTPCI Scholars are expected to devote 60% of their full-time professional effort to the training and clinical research activities related to the program. The remaining effort may be devoted to other clinical or academic pursuits consistent with the award.

Research Project

All applicants must be conducting clinical and translational research. Clinical research is defined as patient-oriented research, that is, research conducted with humans subjects or on material of human origin such as tissues, specimens and cognitive phenomena, for which an investigator or colleague directly interacts with human subjects. Translation is defined by the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) as the process of turning observations in the laboratory, clinic and community into interventions that improve the health of individuals and the public — from diagnostics and therapeutics to medical procedures and behavioral changes. Projects completed as part of this program may consist of pre-clinical, clinical, implementation, or public health research.  More information on the translational spectrum may be found on the NCATS website.

Mentorship

Developing a successful clinical and translational research career requires strong relationships with mentors and a research team. Each scholar must have at least one research mentor. This primary research mentor will be the scholar’s main source of research supervision and career development. It is expected that scholars meet weekly with their primary mentors and that the mentors will be available for consultation and support concerning the scholars’ current projects and future progress. Mentors are expected to provide formal feedback to the scholars at least annually.

In addition to the scholar’s research mentor, the MTPCI will appoint a program mentor for each scholar to further assist in scholar’s career development during the Postdoctoral MTPCI. Meetings with program mentors will be held every six months throughout the duration of the program.

Scholars will also form a mentorship committee and meet with them at least twice per year. Meetings of the mentorship committee will be held each semester (two times per year) throughout the duration of the program to review the scholar’s progress.

Didactic Coursework and Research Seminars

Postdoctoral MTPCI Scholars must complete a minimum of 17 credits and have the option to pursue additional coursework and obtain a Certificate (20 credits) or a Master of Science Degree (33 credits):

  • Designing Outcomes and Clinical Research (M17-513) OR Epidemiology for Clinical Research (M88-588)
  • Introduction to Statistics for the Health Sciences (M17-522)
  • Intermediate Statistics (M17-524) OR Intermediate Methods for Clinical and Outcomes Research (M88-589)
  • Ethical and Legal Issues in Clinical Research (M17-510)
  • Scientific Writing and Publishing (M17-529) OR Grantsmanship (M17-528)
  • MTPCI Research Seminar, four semesters (M17-5140)

At a minimum, scholars are required to enroll in one didactic course per semester throughout the duration of the program in addition to the Research Seminar taken during the first four semesters of the program. Postdoctoral MTPCI scholars have the option to pursue the Master of Science in Clinical Investigation (MSCI) Degree.

Scholars are required to attend the weekly MTPCI Seminar (currently held on Tuesday afternoons) during the Fall and Spring semesters (mid-August through May). Scholars are required to present research-in-progress once each year. Feedback will be provided from the Directors, Mentors, and Peers in attendance. One session each month will be dedicated to Career Development topics. During these seminars, external speakers will be invited to present.

Thesis

Postdoctoral MTPCI scholars are required to complete a research paper submitted for publication in a peer-reviewed journal in order to fulfill the MTPCI thesis requirement. The scholar’s mentorship committee must approve the thesis prior to submission. Completion of the MTPCI is contingent on demonstration that a manuscript was submitted for review.

Individual Development Plans

MTPCI scholars must establish a Individual Development Plan in consultation with their mentors and advisory committee. This plan must be submitted annually on July 1st.

All Individual Development Plans should include:

  • Individual development goals for the next 1-5 years
  • Career objectives for each goal – For each objective, the scholar should indicate what individual products (degrees, publications, presentations, grants, etc.) are expected
  • Research activities and projects that will assist the scholar in meeting the objectives
  • An overview of the courses, workshops and other educational/training activities that the scholar plans to pursue
  • A timeline should also be constructed to display the individual objectives, educational activities, research activities, and products.

Research Training Symposium & Poster Session

The Washington University School of Medicine hosts the Research Training Symposium and Poster Session annually in October. All MTPCI scholars are strongly encouraged to submit an abstract and present a poster at the Symposium each year of their appointments. Scholars are given the option to have their research considered for an oral presentation.

CRTC Career Development Retreat

Postdoctoral Scholars are required to attend the annual Retreat hosted by the CRTC. During this late-afternoon event, speakers will be highlighting topics relevant to Scholars’ Career Development and Research.

IRB Approvals

Scholars are required to provide to the Program current IRB approvals for their research project(s).

Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR)

Scholars are required to complete the course Ethical and Legal Issues in Clinical Research (M17-510) during their time in the program as part of their training in the Responsible Conduct of Research. Scholars must also comply with Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) Guidelines for the duration of the program.

Grant Citations

All presentations and publications related to research funded by the Postdoctoral MTPCI must cite the appropriate grant award. All NIH-funded articles must also have a PMCID. Failure to cite the appropriate grant award and obtain a PMCID for articles supported by the Postdoctoral MTPCI Program may result in a loss of funding.

Research Progress

Scholars are to keep the Program informed of their individual progress including published manuscripts, abstracts, submitted grant applications and awards in a timely manner. Additionally, at least once each year, all Scholars are required to provide progress report detailing their research-in-progress.

ICTS Research Design & Biostatistics Group (RDBG) Research Plan

Scholars are required to schedule an appointment with the RDBG and their mentors to discuss their research plan and specific needs at the start of each program year. The purpose of the RDBG is to provide Scholars with guidance on data management and statistical analysis.

Program Evaluations

Scholars are expected to complete required program evaluations twice per year. These evaluations are administered online and are mandatory for all scholars.

Eligibility

Level of Education

MTPCI scholars must possess a doctoral-level degree. This includes, but is not limited to: MD, PhD, Pharm D, DrPH, DO, DDS, PsyD, DOT, DPT, DC, DSN, or DNSc as well as biostatisticians, epidemiologists, behavioral scientists, and nurses with doctoral degrees.

Citizenship

Eligible applicants must be citizens or non-citizen nationals of the United States, or have been lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence and have in their possession an Alien Registration Receipt Card (I-151 or I-551) or other legal verification of admission for permanent residence. Non-citizen nationals are persons born in lands that are not States but are under U.S. sovereignty, jurisdiction, or administration (e.g., American Samoa). Individuals on visas are not eligible.

Professional Effort

All MTPCI scholars must be able to devote 60% professional effort to the program for a minimum of two years (surgeons may request a lower level of effort, but not less than 50%).

Departmental Support

Departmental support for salary and tuition must be provided throughout the duration of the program.

Institutional Affiliations

The Postdoctoral MTPCI strongly encourages applicants from outside the School of Medicine, including individuals outside WU, SLU, STLCOP, UMSL and SIUE.

Apply

The MTPCI Fall application cycle runs from September 15th – November  1st for a January start date.  The  MTPCI Spring application cycle runs from January 1st – March 15 for a  July start date.

Required Documents:

  1. Application Form
  2. Current Biosketch or Curriculum Vitae
  3. Career Development Plan
  4. Research Plan
  5. Mentor Letter of Support
  6. Department Chair Recommendation Letter

Only complete applications will be reviewed. Applications will not be considered as complete until all supporting documents have been submitted. All application materials must be submitted online. Supporting documents may be updated and re-submitted online prior to the application deadline. Please note that the selection committee will only receive the last version uploaded for each document. Applicants may also attach notes within the online application system after the application form has been submitted if they wish for additional information (i.e., awards, publications, etc.) to be included during the selection process.

Application Form

Applicants must complete and SUBMIT the online application form before supporting documents may be uploaded. This includes the Mentor Letter of Support and the Recommendation Letter.

Current Biosketch or Curriculum Vitae

Applicants must upload either their NIH Biosketch or an updated version of their Curriculum Vitae.

NIH Biosketch Template and Example »

Career Development Plan

A three-page career development plan (references are not included in page count) should include, but is not limited to, the following:

  • Career goals
  • Past research experience and relevant past graduate coursework
  • Research mentor(s) and why they have been selected
  • Planned coursework to be taken during the Postdoctoral MTPCI, and how this coursework is beneficial to the identified research project

Research Plan

The required Research Plan should follow the standard NIH format (PHS 398).

Please note the new NIH requirements for this section around Rigor and Reproducibility: http://grants.nih.gov/reproducibility/faqs.htm#4834

The Research Plan includes:

Section of Research Plan Page Limit
Project Summary/Abstract 1
Introduction (Resubmission Only; NIH PHS 398 form is NOT required) 1
Specific Aims & Research Strategy (Significance, Innovation, and Approach) 5
Protection of Human Subjects, Inclusion of Women and Minorities, Inclusion of Children, Vertebrate Animals 3
Targeted/Planned Enrollment Table 1
Bibliography and References Cited/Progress Report Publication List (include PMCID # if applicable) and Consortium/Contractual Arrangements No Page Limit


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All applicants must be conducting clinical and translational research. Clinical research is defined as patient-oriented research, that is, research conducted with humans subjects or on material of human origin such as tissues, specimens and cognitive phenomena, for which an investigator or colleague directly interacts with human subjects. Translation is defined by the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) as the process of turning observations in the laboratory, clinic and community into interventions that improve the health of individuals and the public — from diagnostics and therapeutics to medical procedures and behavioral changes. Projects completed as part of this program may consist of pre-clinical, clinical, implementation, or public health research.  More information on the translational spectrum may be found on the NCATS website.

Mentor Letter of Support

Proposed mentors are required to submit a letter of support. Applicants must establish a relationship with the proposed mentor prior to submission of the Postdoctoral MTPCI application. Please do not select a mentor without prior approval of the mentor.

The proposed mentor must provide a letter of support by the application deadline. Upon submission of the online application form, an email will be automatically generated to the mentor with guidelines and instructions on how to upload the required letter. It is the responsibility of the applicant to verify that the identified mentor has received the email. Applicants may view a confirmation of the documents that have been uploaded via the online application site.

Mentor Letters must:

  • Be uploaded by the mentor, not the applicant
  • Include the mentor’s signature
  • Be submitted on the mentor’s letterhead

Department Chair Recommendation Letter

Each applicant’s Department Chair or Division Chief is required to submit a letter of support describing the applicant’s potential and guaranteeing the protected time (60%) required for participation in the Postdoctoral MTPCI. This letter of support must be uploaded by the application deadline. Upon submission of the online application form, an email will be automatically generated to the identified Department Chair or Division Chief with guidelines and instructions regarding how to upload the required letter. It is the responsibility of the applicant to verify that the identified reference has received the email. The online application site provides applicants with a checklist on which they may view confirmation of the documents that have been uploaded to their application.

Letters of Recommendation must:

  • Be uploaded by the Department Chair or the Division Chief, not the applicant
  • Include the Department Chair or the Division Chief’s signature
  • Be submitted on letterhead

Required Format for Supporting Documents

  • Black font of either Arial, Helvetica, Palatino Linotype or Georgia
  • Font size of 11 points or larger (a symbol font may be used to insert Greek letters or special characters; the font size requirement still applies.)
  • Type density, including characters and spaces, must be no more than 15 characters per inch
  • Single spaced paragraph type
  • Margins should be at least one-half inch margins (top, bottom, left, and right) for all pages, including continuation pages
  • PDF versions are encouraged for supporting documents to form to preserve page limits and formatting; Alternate formats are allowed
  • Appendices are not allowed

Timeline for MTPCI Spring Application Cycle

  • January 1-April 17– Applications Accepted
  • April 17, 5:00 pm (CST) – Due date for submission of complete application materials
  • April-May – Internal review and approval
  • Late May – New MTPCI Scholars Announced
  • June – Mandatory Scholar Orientation
  • July 1 – Scholar start date
  • Mid-August – Required attendance begins at the weekly, Tuesday MTPCI Research Seminar

Occasionally, there will also be a Fall application cycle. See the Apply Today page for details on currently open CRTC applications.


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