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Didactic Instruction in Translational Research in NeuroAIDS and Mental Health (TRNAMH)

Didactic Course

Duration and format: 1.5 hours per week for approximately 14 weeks. The first hour will be a formal presentation by an expert lecturer, and the last half hour will be presented in a journal club format, where the lecturer will moderate the discussion on a selected manuscript.

Course content reflects strategic research priorities: The lectures will emphasize issues most relevant to underrepresented minorities in the field of NeuroAIDS, and that of the Office of AIDS Research and the NIMH Division of AIDS Research.

Flexible design responds to needs of trainees:  Based on continuous feedback throughout the course, there is flexibility to modify the course topics to meet the needs, interests, and recommendations of the trainees.

Innovative program toolsParticipating faculty experts will create e-lectures called "NeuroAIDS Tracks," which will consist of approximately 20 minutes of their topic's core principles. This e-lecture format will allow trainees access to the information when they need it. Several program faculty have invented innovative Apps such as MySleep101, MySleepScript, HIV Dementia Scale, and the International HIV Dementia Scale, making available essential e-tools at the fingertips of specialists who may be located in resource-poor settings around the world. Development and use of those Apps will be discussed with program trainees. 

Career building and mentorship: These courses will also serve as a venue for collaboration and advice with experienced scientists with expertise in relevant areas of NeuroAIDS, as well as areas related to grant writing, grant funding, work-life balance, and the mentee-mentor relationship. The sessions will also allow for networking and collaboration among underrepresented minority and non-minority scientists  working on complementary scientific projects.

Program Evaluations: Both formative and summative evaluations will be used to assess the impact and success of the TRNAMH program. Trainees will be asked to provide both a structured and unstructured evaluation of their perceived quality and satisfaction of: 1) didactic course, 2) mentorship received, 3) research experience, 4) lecture topics, and 5) faculty. Additional questions will focus on their career plans and interest in pursuing a career in NeuroAIDS-related issues or concerns. Program faculty will also complete evaluations based on their experience with teaching the trainees, level of interaction, and the quality of the program. TRNAMH's Executive Committee will use those evaluations, as well as measurable outcomes i.e. number of course participants, variation of institutions participating, number of abstracts/publications submitted and/or awarded, and academic promotions, to provide a summative evaluation of the entire program.

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