Research Training

We have several options for residents interested in research in the Department of Psychiatry, University of Colorado, School of Medicine. The Pathways Resident Research Track is the most intensive of these options.  It is designed for residents who have a strong track record of research successes and are interested in pursuing research as part of their current and future career. Typically, residents in this track intend to apply for NIH funding and/or pursue a post-doctoral fellowship following residency. The track offers the opportunity to conduct research with a primary faculty mentor throughout residency. Successful applicants will have a plan to publish early in the track years (e.g., review paper, use of mentor’s already collected samples), while also developing and running a data collection project (e.g., as an add-on to a mentor’s ongoing project, or a small independent pilot). The track individualized research plan and progress report forms are available via these links (Individualized Research Plan 2021; Progress Report Form 2021 ; IRP Scoring Rubric 2021; PR Scoring Rubric 2021)).

Emmaly Perks, MA, CCRP
emmaly.perks@cuanschutz.edu
Education Manager
(303) 724-4067

Joseph Sakai, MD
joseph.sakai@cuanschutz.edu
(303) 724-7402

The goals of our scholarly program for all residents are to: prepare psychiatrists to critically evaluate scientific literature and understand the importance of research in driving evidence-based practice; teach residents to apply the basic principles of research to clinical questions they encounter in their practice; encourage residents to develop an area of expertise relevant to their career goals; and, to ensure our residents become psychiatrists who are lifelong learners and scholars, regardless of whether they themselves conduct research post residency.

While some residents do more intense research through the Pathways Resident Research Tracks, all residents will develop and complete a scholarly project with a primary mentor beginning in their PG2 year, and all will be encouraged to participate in the Department's annual poster session, present at a national meeting, and/or submit to a peer-reviewed journal.

During the PGY-2 year, all residents receive a specialized curriculum in research methods, QI development, and scholarly writing skills. All PGY-2 residents have a one-month, mentored scholarship rotation to develop and begin implementing a project with a primary mentor. Residents may also choose to dedicate some additional elective time to research/scholarship.

The Pathways-RRT is a unique track within the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Colorado. This track incorporates research experiences and training throughout the PGY-2 through PGY-4/5 years (depending on whether residents pursue fellowship training in child/adolescent psychiatry). Applicants to the residency program with a strong track record of successful research may indicate an interest in the track and may be invited for additional specific interviews for Pathways-RRT. Those admitted into the Pathways-RRT must complete an individualized research plan in collaboration with their identified primary research mentor by January of their intern year. This track maximizes research time and training concurrently with acquiring clinical competence in psychiatry; its goal is to develop physician-scientists for future academic roles in psychiatry.

For those who choose the general residency, the research time allotted by PGY year is outlined below. This track can lead to one or two more years of funded, full-time research (see the Developmental Psychobiology Research Group T32 Training Program).  During the PGY-3 and 4 years, Pathways-RRT residents are provided up to $10,000/year to support their research. Through their mentors, residents in the track also have access to the Psychiatry Research Innovations (PRI) program, which is a departmental resource for biostatistics, research operations, clinical research support and research education and training.  Residents attend a monthly research meeting and are required to submit a progress report annually – the Pathways-RRT Resident Recruitment, Selection and Evaluation Committee reviews individualized research plans and progress reports and provides written feedback to each resident and primary mentor. The time commitment in the PGY-3 and 4 years is intended to allow application to the NIH Loan Repayment Program.

Structure for residents in the general program:

  PG 1 PG 2 PG 3 PG 4
Adult No time 2-3 months (17-25%) 50% effort 50% effort

 

For those who choose to pursue fellowship training in child/adolescent psychiatry, the Pathways-RRT integrates training in psychiatry, child & adolescent psychiatry, and research throughout the PGY-2 through PGY-5 years. This track can lead to a 6th year of funded, full-time research (see the Developmental Psychobiology Research Group T32 Training Program). During the CR1 and CR2 years, residents are provided up to $5,000-10,000/year in funds to support their research. Through their mentors, residents in this track also have access to the Psychiatry Research Innovations (PRI) service center which is a departmental resource for biostatistics, research operations, clinical research support and research education and training. Residents attend a monthly research meeting and are required to submit a progress report annually – the Pathways-RRT Resident Recruitment, Selection and Evaluation Committee reviews individualized research plans and progress reports and provides written feedback to each resident and mentor. The primary goal of the integrated track is to prepare clinician-scientists for future academic roles in child psychiatry.

Structure for residents in the child/adolescent psychiatry fellowship:

  PGY 1 PGY 2 PGY 3 CR 1 CR 2
Child No time 2-3 months (17-25%) 1 day per week (20% effort) 40% effort 50% effort

PATHWAYS-RRT PROFILES OF RECENT GRADUATES:

Jesse HinkleyDr. Jesse Hinckley received a BS in Neuroscience from Brigham Young University on 2005, completed his PhD in Human Molecular Genetics in 2013 and received his MD in 2015. He completed General Psychiatry Residency Training (2018) and Child & Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship Training (2020) at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. Dr. Hinckley has 14 published manuscripts (6 first authored), including in Nature Genetics.  Dr. Hinckley was awarded a competitive Colorado Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute Pilot Award in early 2020. Upon completion of fellowship training, Dr. Hinckley joined the faculty of the Department of Psychiatry at CU and was awarded a NIDA-funded (AACAP Physician Scientist Program in Substance Use K12 Career Development Award) K12 Award in March of 2021.  

Devika BhatiaDr. Devika Bhatia graduated from Pomona College (Bachelor of Arts) in 2010 and from Florida International University Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine (Doctor of Medicine) in 2016.  She completed General Psychiatry Residency Training (2019) and Child & Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship (2021) at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. Devi realized her passion for research later than some, finding an interest mid-way through residency.  After completing a research elective and showing strong productivity, Devi was accepted into the Pathways-RRT during Child Fellowship.  Still, with relatively limited dedicated research time in residency (in an older version of the Pathways-RRT), Devi published two first-authored and one co-authored manuscripts, received the NIDA-AACAP Resident Training Award in Substance Use Disorders and submitted two grant applications.  Her first-authored paper in Pediatrics was selected by the editor as one of the best articles in the journal, representing 1 of 10 “articles that had the greatest impact on our readers in 2020.” Devi will start as a post-doctoral research fellow with the DPRG in summer of 2021.

Clinical Training Tracks

This clinical track offers rotation options in child and adolescent settings starting in the PGY-I year including pediatrics and pediatric neurology.   In the PGY-2 year, participants in this track have their choice of rotating on Children’s Hospital’s inpatient psychiatry unit or Denver Health’s adolescent psychiatry unit.  PGY-3s  have the opportunity to work in the Child & Adolescent Outpatient Clinic. The objectives of this track are to enhance the developmental perspective in psychiatry, provide early exposure to child and adolescent clinical settings, and to foster career development in child and adolescent psychiatry.

The Career Program is jointly sponsored by the psychiatry residency and its public mental health partners. The objective of the career program is to provide residents with an in-depth exposure to public psychiatry while still in training and to foster career development in community and state mental health systems. Residents enroll in the program at the beginning of the PGY-2 year and are given a leave of absence after the PGY-3 year in order to perform a year of staff service at a public sector mental health facility. Participating residents are paid the standard salary set by the sponsoring institution for the service year; this salary is partly distributed during the training years as a supplement to the regular residency stipend.

Currently, the Mental Health Center of Denver is participating in this program.

The MHCD career program was instituted in 1994. During their service year, residents in the Career Program work as a member of a multi-disciplinary team within a full continuum of recovery-oriented services.  MHCD serves the City and County of Denver and provides treatment to individuals and families with a wide variety of behavioral health problems: crisis intervention, children and families at risk, persons with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression, and anxiety.  MHCD employs over 400 professionals to provide a range of services at 32 sites for more than 7000 people each year.  Services include evidence-based and innovative practices such as Assertive Community Treatment, integrated physical health care, and supported employment and housing.

The Psychotherapy Scholars Track is designed for psychiatry residents who seek advanced psychotherapy training and psychotherapy scholarship during residency and who plan to pursue additional psychotherapy training and practice post-residency. This track builds upon the comprehensive psychotherapy curriculum that is a core component of our residency program and uses elective time to add intensive supervision, reading, and projects. The goals of the Psychotherapy Scholars Track include: 

  1. Advanced knowledge base in psychotherapy theory, literature, and history. 
  2. Clinical competency in five forms of psychotherapy including brief treatment, cognitive behavioral therapy, psychodynamic psychotherapy, group therapy, and family and couples psychotherapy. 
  3. Completion of a scholarly project related to psychotherapy. 

Contact Us

Department of Psychiatry Residency

13001 E 17th Place

Bldg 500, Rm E2322

Aurora, CO 80045

Phone: (303) 724-6021

Fax: (303) 724-4963

 

 

Sara Dillard

Program Coordinator

Phone: (303) 724-6019

Email: Sara Dillard

 

Robert D. Davies, MD

Program Director

Phone: (303) 724-6021

Email: Robert Davies