The Predoctoral Training Program for medical students provides a mentored research experience (9 month) with opportunities to participate in research on many levels and learn from successful program faculty conducting cutting-edge basic, clinical and translational research in the auditory, vestibular, olfactory, and communication sciences.

The program provides medical students:

  1. A mentored research experience with a faculty member conducting basic, clinical, translational or behavioral research in diseases and conditions related to deafness and other communication disorders. Multidisciplinary research training experiences are encouraged. View potential mentors and their research areas»
  2. Didactic core and elective coursework to acquire in-depth knowledge related to relevant biomedical, clinical, behavioral or clinical research techniques. Trainees attend weekly departmental Grand Rounds and Research Seminars and the TL1 Predoctoral Research Seminars; and are encouraged to pursue the Certificate of Clinical Investigation (CCCI) or Master of Science in Clinical Investigation (MSCI) degree.
  3. Professional development opportunities to participate in seminars, workshops, and tutorials focused on topics related to enhancing skills and career advancement. Trainees will present the results of their research as posters at the medical center-wide research training symposium held each fall and at a national meeting. The trainees will also submit the results of their research as first author to a peer-reviewed journal.


  • Monthly stipend and research-related expenses
  • New online clinical research training modules developed by Drs. Jay Piccirillo and Dorina Kallogjeri. Topics include Architect of Clinical Research, Biostatistics, Critical Appraisal, and Scientific Writing.
  • Tuition remission available for coursework related to Certificate of Clinical Investigation (CCCI) and Master of Science in Clinical Investigation (MSCI) degrees
  • Travel to national meetings
  • Multidisciplinary seminars



  • Must be US citizen, US non-citizen national, or US permanent resident and enrolled in a doctoral degree program in medicine in the United States
  • Commitment to a nine-month full-time research training experience
  • Support of a program-approved mentor

Forms and dates

Download the Application Packet and related resources »

Accepting applications annually: July 1-December 31

Award Notice: January

Start Date: July or August (mutually agreed upon, but subject to NIH Guidelines)


Jana Richardson
Program Administrator

Jay F. Piccirillo, MD
Program Director


Is it important that applicants have prior otolaryngology research experience?

No prior otolaryngology research experience is required. We are most interested in students who are motivated to learn, have a passion for research, and are interested in diseases and conditions of hearing, balance, speech, communication, taste, or smell.

How can I find a mentor? Is there a list of eligible faculty … or could I choose anyone in the Department of Otolaryngology?

Research within the department embraces the full spectrum of research endeavors, including basic science, applied and clinical science, clinical trials and clinical outcomes research.  Here are a few ways to help you identify a potential mentor and research project:

  • Review the list of mentors and their areas of research cited above
  • Explore the Research section to learn more about Otolaryngology faculty and their research
  • Email Program Director Jay Piccirillo, MD directly. He is happy to help you identify potential mentors

What’s the best timing for a medical student to pursue a nine-month predoctoral research opportunity?
Typically, after the traditional 3rd year clerkship experience and before 4th year electives is best. However, many students who complete a research experience after their second year of medical school are also successful.

R25 grant acknowledgment in publications

Please include the following funding acknowledgement in all your research publications and documents. This is mandatory. Do not edit. Use verbatim:

“Research reported in this publication was supported by the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders within the National Institutes of Health, through the “Otolaryngology R25 Mentored Research Pathway for Residents and Medical Students” training grant, award number R25DC020706. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.”

PMCID Numbers: NIH-funded investigators are required to submit (or have submitted for them) their final, peer-reviewed manuscript to PubMed Central (PMC) upon acceptance of publications to be made publicly available within 12 months of publication. Note: PMCID is not the same as PMID. More information available online at

Questions? Contact program coordinator Jana Richardson at