More than 300 pre- and post -doctoral students and junior faculty Scholars at the national Association for Clinical and Translational Science (ACTS) Conference have participated in a Mock Study Section hosted by the University of Minnesota CTSI’s Research Education, Training, and Career Development team since 2016.
“A Mock Study Section simulates an NIH grant Study Section where the Scientific Review Officer and review committee score each application and the scores are used to determine which grants will be funded. While not traditionally part of a Scholar’s training, this unique exercise helps Scholars better understand how their grant applications are reviewed by the NIH, which ultimately helps them become better grant writers,” said CTSI Program Lead and Associate Angela Merrifield.
CTSI’s ACTS Mock Study Section participants review previously submitted NIH R, K, or F applications and then participate as reviewers in a formal discussion and review of the grants. At the conclusion of the review, participants have an opportunity to compare their critique with the actual feedback provided by the NIH. CTSI has worked with more than 60 senior faculty reviewers and NIH SROs who facilitate these events.
“It is a helpful and unique exercise to be on the ‘other side’ of the review process, and have the ability to leverage real SROs for the event. This activity is consistently one of the highest rated educational offerings at the ACTS Conference ,” Merrifield said.
After three years of hosting the event, the University of Minnesota CTSI has passed the baton to the Indiana Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI), who will host the ACTS Conference Mock Study Section in 2019.