Journal of General Internal Medicine

, Volume 23, Issue 2, pp 122–128

Effectiveness of a 1-Year Resident Training Program in Clinical Research: A Controlled Before-and-After Study

  • Bernd Löwe
  • Mechthild Hartmann
  • Beate Wild
  • Christoph Nikendei
  • Kurt Kroenke
  • Dorothea Niehoff
  • Peter Henningsen
  • Stephan Zipfel
  • Wolfgang Herzog
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s11606-007-0397-8

Cite this article as:
Löwe, B., Hartmann, M., Wild, B. et al. J GEN INTERN MED (2008) 23: 122. doi:10.1007/s11606-007-0397-8

Abstract

Background

To increase the number of clinician scientists and to improve research skills, a number of clinical research training programs have been recently established. However, controlled studies assessing their effectiveness are lacking.

Objective

To investigate the effectiveness of a 1-year resident training program in clinical research.

Design

Controlled before-and-after study. The training program included a weekly class in clinical research methods, completion of a research project, and mentorship.

Participants

Intervention subjects were 15 residents participating in the 1-year training program in clinical research. Control subjects were 22 residents not participating in the training program.

Measurements and Main Results

Assessments were performed at the beginning and end of the program. Outcomes included methodological research knowledge (multiple-choice progress test), self-assessed research competence, progress on publications and grant applications, and evaluation of the program using quantitative and qualitative methods.

Results

Intervention subjects and controls were well matched with respect to research experience (5.1 ± 2.2 vs 5.6 ± 5.8 years; p = .69). Methodological knowledge improved significantly more in the intervention group compared to the control group (effect size = 2.5; p < .001). Similarly, self-assessed research competence increased significantly more in the intervention group (effect size = 1.1; p = .01). At the end of the program, significantly more intervention subjects compared to controls were currently writing journal articles (87% vs 36%; p = .003). The intervention subjects evaluated the training program as highly valuable for becoming independent researchers.

Conclusions

A 1-year training program in clinical research can substantially increase research knowledge and productivity. The program design makes it feasible to implement in other academic settings.

KEY WORDS

medical educationcurriculumclinical researchevaluation studiesresearch training

Copyright information

© Society of General Internal Medicine 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bernd Löwe
    • 1
    • 2
  • Mechthild Hartmann
    • 2
  • Beate Wild
    • 2
  • Christoph Nikendei
    • 2
  • Kurt Kroenke
    • 3
  • Dorothea Niehoff
    • 2
  • Peter Henningsen
    • 4
  • Stephan Zipfel
    • 5
  • Wolfgang Herzog
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and PsychotherapyUniversity Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf and Hamburg-Eilbek (Schön Clinics)HamburgGermany
  2. 2.Department of Psychosomatic and General Internal MedicineUniversity of Heidelberg, Medical CenterHeidelbergGermany
  3. 3.Regenstrief Institute for Health Care and Department of MedicineIndiana UniversityIndianapolisUSA
  4. 4.Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and PsychotherapyTechnical University of MunichMunichGermany
  5. 5.Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and PsychotherapyUniversity of TübingenTübingenGermany