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Organizing Test Tubes


A concerted effort is being made to improve the scientific rigor and reproducibility of biomedical research. CMBD fully endorses this effort, and besides its own efforts to enhance R&R in trainees' research, CMBD encourages its trainees to explore and learn more about how their research can be improved.

The following Northwestern resources are available:

  • The Office of Research Integrity at Northwestern provides a list of resources for research-related Principal Investigators (PIs), research teams, and research administration staff. 

  • Since being established in 2004, the Biostatistics Collaboration Center has contributed their expertise in biostatistical science, programming and data management to the high-quality, innovative research done by Northwestern investigators that ultimately results in funded grants, peer-reviewed publications and presentations at professional meetings. Services offered include study design and planning, results interpretation, and a free lecture series with topics on biostatistics in biomedical research.

  • Good Clinical Practice (GCP) is an international, ethical and scientific quality standard for designing, conducting, recording and reporting trials that involve the participation of human subjects. Compliance with this standard provides public assurance that the rights, safety and well-being of trial subjects are protected. Through NUCATS, the Feinberg School of Medicine offers several courses in GCP.

  • The Women's Health Research Institute (WHRI) has developed a number of resources for clinicians, researchers, students, patients, and community members interested in sex-based differences in research and health care including the Sex-Inclusion Toolbox.

  • NUIT Data Science Workshops. NUIT offers in-person classes on data science programming such as R, Python, SQL and others. Advanced registration is required, and you must bring your own laptop. 

The following external resources are available:

  • Statistics for Biologists Collection. Since 2013, Nature Methods has been publishing a monthly column on statistics called "Points of Significance." This column is intended to provide researchers in biology with a basic introduction to core statistical concepts and methods, including experimental design. This collection highlights important statistical issues that biologists should be aware of and provides practical advice to help them improve the rigor of their work.

  • NIH Clearinghouse for Training Modules to Enhance Reproducibility. This website contains links to several training modules focused on data reproducibility such as Sex as a Biological Variable, Controls in Animal Studies, and Cell Line Authentication, among many others.

  • NIH R&R Training Modules. The NIH has developed four video modules with accompanying discussion materials that focus on integral components of reproducibility and rigor in the research endeavor, such as bias, blinding, and exclusion criteria. These videos are not comprehensive training modules. Rather, they are meant to serve as a foundation upon which to build further education, training, and discussion.

  • NIH Sex and Gender Online Course Series. The NIH Office of Research on Women's Health offers a series of three courses designed to create a permanent foundation for sex and gender accountability in medical research and treatment by enabling researchers, clinicians, and students in the health professions to integrate knowledge of sex and gender differences and similarities into their research and practice.

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