Research Education Core

The Research Education Component Core of the Indiana Alzheimer’s Disease Center develops new researchers specifically trained to discover innovative approaches to improve understanding, diagnosis and treatment of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. This work is achieved by stimulating education, information and training; coordinating across laboratories; and evaluating success in research education.

Alzheimer’s disease research has been at the forefront of neuroscience due to substantive innovations in molecular biology, genetics, neuropathology and imaging technologies. Nevertheless, a critical need exists for professionals with specialized training to bring basic and clinical neuroscience of Alzheimer’s disease into the next generation. Therefore, it is vital for the Indiana Alzheimer’s Disease Center to develop a successful Research Education Core.

This core’s resources and expertise stimulate synergy among the components of the Indiana Alzheimer’s Disease Center and improves faculty development and research in neurodegeneration. The core promotes and disseminates concepts and functions of Indiana Alzheimer’s Disease Center cores to students and trainees, facilitates coordination among established faculty, and guides junior faculty in obtaining funding and facilitate their career stability.

Members of the Research Education Core help researchers develop translational skills to move basic findings to clinical interventions and clinical findings to mechanistic studies. The core’s critical innovation is to improve upon current practices by adding rational, methodical training, and mentoring specifically devoted to critical skills underlying publication and successful grant preparation.

Goals

The core provides organizational infrastructure within the Indiana Alzheimer’s Disease Center for research education. Research Education Core leadership define and coordinate training logistics and assemble a team of senior NIH-sponsored mentors for students/trainees.

The core instills integrated fundamental knowledge of brain health and dementing illnesses through didactic courses related to Alzheimer’s disease, brain aging, neuropathology, and neurodegeneration linked with behavioral, cellular, genetic, imaging and biostatistical approaches; biweekly seminar series and annual Research Symposium for Alzheimer’s disease and dementia; a Behavioral Neurology and Neuropsychiatry Fellowship program; and continuing the Neurobehavioral Rotation for psychiatry and neurology residents.

Members of the core recruit, retain and assist students and faculty at multiple career levels, including historically underrepresented groups. Trainees get structured guidance in writing, reviewing and submitting scientific communication and successful grant applications.

The core defines specific metrics to assess Research Education Core’s service to students, trainees and fellows. Metrics include rates and quality of conference participation, peer-reviewed publication, and grants submitted, funded and rate of success. The core monitors career progression, post-training employment, promotion in employment and satisfaction from participants.

The core fosters active cross-disciplinary interaction and collaboration within the center and beyond. The Research Education Core facilitates a multidisciplinary team of Alzheimer’s disease researchers, available to students/trainees. The core also provides a strong framework and resources to help develop the next generation of researchers working to enhance brain health and quality of life.