The Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine has four value domains that are integrated across students' four years of study. Research is one of the domains that makes the school unique.
All of our students are required to participate in the research curriculum. The first year of classes focuses on research instruction. The Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine wants to make sure every student has the rudimentary tools needed to complete a research project. Students will get four-and-a-half hours of research instruction each week during the first two years. Included in that instruction time, students will receive "Research Live" presentations from faculty members who want to highlight research opportunities available to VTC students. When a student identifies an area or mentor of interest, they can begin discussions with the faculty member about the nature and scope of the research project.
Students should select a project between the first and second year. A seven-week block of unscheduled time is built into the schedule for students to begin the research project effort between those two years.
During the second year, students will review the research instruction from the first year and tailor it to their selected project. Faculty will also present students with additional instruction focusing on areas such as legal issues, regulations, ethics and more. Concurrently, the mentors will help the students identify two co-mentors. The mentor and co-mentors will become the student's advisory team. By the end of the second year, students should be well prepared to perform their research project.
After approval, students will have portions of a 14-week block of time between years two and three to do the bulk of the experiments and data collection for their project.
During years three and four, there are two- and four-week blocks of time between clinical rotations where students can continue work on their research projects. The school anticipates data collection and analysis to be complete near the beginning of the fourth year so students can commit to the writing of a manuscript of publishable quality.
In all, more than 1500 hours of research time has been reserved in the curriculum.