Research Project

Research training is an important focus of the DBP fellowship. This ongoing experience is an opportunity for fellows to develop their clinical research skills and increase their abilities to contribute to the scientific base of DBP, particularly related to improving the developmental and behavioral outcomes of infants born prematurely and advancing treatment strategies for children with developmental and behavioral disorders. To develop as researchers, the fellows have training in clinical research fundamentals (e.g., identifying a research question, selecting a study design, choosing research study participants, selecting appropriate methods) and research implementation (e.g., ethics, recruitment, data management and analysis). In Year 1, these skills are cultivated through the use of established datasets held by DBP faculty; by Year 2, the fellows are pursuing an individual research project that reflects their DBP-related clinical interests. 

A full timeline can be found here.

To support the research enterprise at Stanford and LPCH, the Child Health Research Program (CHRP) was initiated to foster and facilitate the highest quality clinical and translational research and clinical trials in children's services, while enhancing young investigator, trainee and mid-level faculty research performance. These objectives are accomplished by providing services, expert consultation, and mentoring for career development. Fellows are required to take the Annual Intensive Course in Clinical Research through CHRP. It is a one-week 40-hour program with a combination of lectures, small group discussions, and individual coaching. Its timing, October of Year 1, is ideal for assisting fellows in defining their research project. They may take the course a second time to refine their conceptual framework, methods, or data analysis skills. Fellows are required to take Research methods in Year 1. This one-hour/week course is offered for 20 weeks through Child and Adolescent Psychiatry; faculty presentations are alternated with discussion of readings regarding research design, methods, and biostatistics. Fellows also take Medical ethics: Responsible conduct of research in Spring of Year 1. This course covers many topics, including informed consent, authorship, and relationship with commercial funders.

A key element of the research program is mentorship. The portfolio of ongoing and funded projects within this program and across the campus assures that DBP fellows have access to exciting and productive research training opportunities and outstanding mentors. Several lines of evidence point to the quality of the mentoring. Dr. Feldman’s CV documents that 6 of 12 peer-reviewed publications and 6 of 9 non-peer reviewed publications over the last 4 years have included trainees and/or young faculty as co-authors. Dr. Lynne Huffman mentored a fellow in Child Psychiatry who won the 2007 Young Investigator Manuscript Award at SDBP. Her CV includes 10 peer-reviewed publications since 2000 than have included trainees.

An Individual Research Plan helps fellows keep track of their progress in research.