Medical Student Research
UT Southwestern Medical School has a long-standing commitment to foster research by its students. The core effort of this office is to provide opportunities for all medical students enrolled at UT Southwestern to engage in a variety of research activities - both basic and clinical - in conjunction with the faculty at UT Southwestern. The office of the Associate Dean for Medical Student Research is charged with organizing these activities.
A large number of UT Southwestern medical students take advantage of the Summer Research Program each year. Most students choose to participate during the summer prior to and/or following their freshman year. Students begin the process of choosing the laboratory in which they will work during the school year, and then finalize this choice in the spring. The research begins after the school year is over and lasts for approximately 10 weeks. Students are paid a research stipend during this period and are able to attend a series of weekly luncheon seminars in which faculty and former student researchers discuss the fundamentals of basic and clinical research. Students are encouraged to submit their work to national and regional meetings, including the Medical Student Research Forum.
Other students choose to use their elective credits in their third and fourth years to complete a Research Elective to work on a project with a chosen mentor. For these electives, the student contacts a faculty mentor and then gets approval for the project with the Associate Dean.
Both of these opportunities can lead to a M.D. with Distinction in Research. Students who have 16 weeks of research experience can apply to the M.D. with Distinction program and present a thesis to their research mentors and peers.
In addition to summer research activities, students are encouraged to explore year-long research programs in basic or clinical research. National research programs, such as those supported by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and by the Sarnoff Foundation, represent programs that afford comprehensive research training in a variety of disciplines.