Graduate Education for the Future: New Models and Methods for the Clinical and Translational Workforce

Clin Transl Sci. 2015 Dec;8(6):787-92. doi: 10.1111/cts.12359. Epub 2015 Dec 8.


This paper is the third in a five-part series on the clinical and translational science educational pipeline, and it focuses on strategies for enhancing graduate research education to improve skills for interdisciplinary team science. Although some of the most cutting edge science takes place at the borders between disciplines, it is widely perceived that advancements in clinical and translational science are hindered by the "siloed" efforts of researchers who are comfortable working in their separate domains, and reluctant to stray from their own discipline when conducting research. Without appropriate preparation for career success as members and leaders of interdisciplinary teams, talented scientists may choose to remain siloed or to leave careers in clinical and translational science all together, weakening the pipeline and depleting the future biomedical research workforce. To address this threat, it is critical to begin at what is perhaps the most formative moment for academics: graduate training. This paper focuses on designs for graduate education, and contrasts the methods and outcomes from traditional educational approaches with those skills perceived as essential for the workforce of the future, including the capacity for research collaboration that crosses disciplinary boundaries.

Keywords: career development; clinical and translational research; education; pipeline; workforce.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Capacity Building
  • Cooperative Behavior
  • Curriculum
  • Education, Graduate* / methods
  • Humans
  • Interdisciplinary Communication
  • Mentors
  • Models, Educational
  • Program Development
  • Research Personnel / education
  • Translational Research, Biomedical / education*
  • Workforce