Center for Research in Medical Education

Director: TBD
Members: TBD

The mission of the Center for Research in Medical Education (CRME) is to cultivate a culture of excellence, innovation and scholarship in medical education among the CNUCOM basic science and clinical faculty members.

Our goal is to promote excellence in the areas of teaching innovation, educational research and scholarship. The core initiatives to accomplish our mission include:

  • Supporting and encouraging faculty to adopt excellence in research methods
  • Supporting and encouraging faculty to adopt innovative methods in knowledge dissemination
  • Guiding faculty to conduct educational research including utilization of assessment of teaching/training tools
  • Assisting faculty to develop and validate new teaching assessment tools
  • Training faculty to utilize advanced and innovative teaching technologies to enhance the learning experience of students
  • Coordinating structured collaborations between faculty for innovative integrative, interdisciplinary and interprofessional teaching
  • Recognizing excellence and innovation in teaching and scholarship in the form of awards
  • Disseminating new knowledge in medical education.


At the heart of all the programs planned by the Center for Medical Education Research, is a strong belief that sharing best practices and expertise is the best way to create a culture of excellence.

The Center for Medical Education Research will also offer:

  • Workshops on emerging topics in the field of medical education.
  • Workshops on innovative technologies in medical education.
  • Assistance and guidance in forming small interest groups on specific topics.
  • Individual faculty one-on-one consultation sessions as a part of the “Mentors in Medical Education Research” program.
  • Coaching on innovative teaching skills.
  • Resources to support professional development of faculty members in these areas.

Scholarly Project

This research-based program allows students to hone their analytical and investigative skills by participating in an active research project under a faculty mentor to produce usable data sets, public presentations, and abstracts suitable for publication. Students participate in the research effort by selecting an advisor, usually by field of common interest. The advisor serves as a mentor at the preclinical level, incorporating faculty resources for oversight to generate a suitable research project proposal with corresponding planned analysis and outcomes. This is the primary goal of the first phase. The second phase builds on the first, and adds supplemental, affiliate mentorship, resources, and oversight to generate a final abstract submission suitable for publication and culminates in an oral or poster presentation to faculty and fellow students. It is expected that students and advisors will meet several times each year during the scholarly project, to verify progress and provide the necessary research guidance enabling completion.

As a result of their direct participation in the Scholarly Project series, students develop critical investigational and problem-solving skills that continue to benefit them throughout their careers. The Scholarly Project is overseen by the Assistant Dean of Research, who is directly responsible for monitoring the program.

The second of the competencies of medical students described in ED-1 is competency in Medical and Scientific Knowledge. Embedded throughout the curriculum the students will be exposed to the scientific method, evaluation of scientific research, and issues related to understanding and evaluating scientific information in the practice of medicine.

Mini-Grant Program

The Mini-Grant program provides support of faculty and student research and scholarship. Each year, the College of Medicine has committed to allocating funds to help support research projects in the first and second years of medical school. The school’s intent is to fund up to $100,000 per year.

This program is designed to:

A. Allow students and faculty to generate pilot data or scholarship that can be incorporated into a grant application to an external funding agency (private, state, federal or foundation), or
B. Foster activity that will lead to a publication (of a book chapter, book, monograph, edited collection, article, or artwork to name only a few examples), or other tangible outcomes, that advance the student’s scholarship.

Funds may be used for any purpose related to the conduct of scholarship or research except to offset normal departmental operating expenses (unless these are an integral part of the proposed work: e.g., costs associated with telephone and postage).

As described above, all students will be required to participate in a scholarly project. Students may also participate in summer research with faculty between their first and second years of medical school. Opportunities for research will be advertised to students on a regular basis. At this time, there are no plans for a combined medical/research degree or for year-out research opportunities.

Research Elective (year 4)

In addition to the Scholarly Project in the first and second years, students will have the opportunity to identify or continue to perform clinical research during a research elective. A student project is identified and approved by the faculty advisor in concert with the Assistant Dean of Research. Allowing interested students to further pursue research, this elective is open to the topic of research as well as methodology. In order to ensure themselves a spot in the rotation cycle, students interested in pursuing a research elective should plan on meeting with the Assistant Dean of Research, the program director, and any other key staff members, well in advance to plan their research experience, and again (at least 1 month prior) to identify any critical resources that may be needed to successfully achieve the project goals. Ultimately, the value of this elective is to provide students who are interested in research an additional experience so that they can learn to appreciate and abide by the scientific methodologies used to solve contemporary biomedical problems. Depending on individual progress and the subsequent level of follow up, students can look forward to the possibility of coauthoring a scientific article.

Additional Opportunities

Faculty members will be encouraged to let students know about opportunities to participate in faculty-sponsored research projects. Additionally, the Assistant Dean of Research will oversee mechanisms for providing information to students about available research via email, newsletters, and institutional websites.

California Northstate University College of Medicine ♦ 9700 West Taron Drive ♦ Elk Grove, CA 95757 ♦ Phone: (916) 686-7300