The Research Track
The Research Track is one of three available Tracks. Residents in the Research Track can select mentors from across the entire UCLA campus, representing a broad range of expertise including basic, clinical, translational, health services, and social sciences. Research Track leadership can help to identify and introduce junior residents to prospective research projects and faculty mentors.
Benefits of the program include protected time from clinical duties to focus on research-related activities and internal funding opportunities during the PGY-3 and PGY-4 years through the UCLA-Semel Psychiatry Research Catalyst Award. The program curriculum also provides regular opportunities to meet leading researchers and clinicians in psychiatry and learn about their areas of interest during regular lunchtime forums. The lunch forum also involves journal club discussions led by residents on cutting-edge topics in psychiatry and oral presentations given by residents on their research projects.
Beyond the residency training period, the program is committed to supporting residents as they pursue their research career interests. Mentorship and guidance continue after residency and there are a wide variety of post-residency research opportunities. The UCLA and the VA system offer research fellowships, a child psychiatry fellowship research track, and numerous post-doctoral positions.
We have a particular commitment to recruiting and developing applicants underrepresented in research residencies and academic research faculty nationwide as part of the overall mission to address systemic injustice and inequity (for more information, visit our page on Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion).
Even if you are not formally in the Research Track, you can still participate in research! Categorical/General Track residents who are interested in pursuing research activities during residency can apply as PGY-2s for up to 33% of protected time for their projects during PGY-3 and 4. In rare cases, if further research time is desired, categorical residents may also inquire about internally transferring into the research track with the research track program director.
Residents in the Research Track will receive protected time to engage in research during PGY-2, 3, and 4. In PGY-2, two clinical blocks (approximately 8 weeks) are set aside for research. Scheduling is flexible and will be done in coordination with the Residency Education Office to maximize the benefit for each resident (such as placing this time at the end of PGY-2 to facilitate the transition to more intensive research in PGY-3 and 4).
During PGY-3 and 4, Research Track residents are granted protected time for research while meeting ACGME clinical requirements and attending didactics. On average, PGY-3’s are granted 50% and PGY-4’s are granted 60% of longitudinal time over the year for research. This protected time can be flexibly divided between PGY-3 and 4 depending on individual needs.