November 4, 2020. Stanford's Department of Epidemiology & Population Health has launched a new Behavioral and Social Science Research (BSSR) Predoctoral Training Program to train predoctoral social and behavioral science students in computational methods for cutting-edge digital health and other "big data" social and behavioral science research.
A five-year grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences (OBSSR) and its partner institutes--the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the National Institute of Mental Health, and the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities--makes the program possible. It will equip students with the behavioral/social science and computational skills to make important discoveries using novel study designs and big data.
This program will be led by: Lorene Nelson, PhD, an epidemiologist and biostatistician in the Department of Epidemiology & Population Health; Abby King, PhD, a clinical health psychologist in the Departments of Epidemiology & Population Health and of Medicine; and Lesley Park, PhD, MPH, an instructor in the Department of Epidemiology & Population Health and Associate Director at Stanford's Center for Population Health Sciences.
"The TADA-BSSR T32 training program is providing an opportunity for doctoral students to learn cutting-edge methodology with foundational theory in a fast emerging field," said Lesley Park. "Our trainees will not only train with renowned Stanford faculty, but they will also benefit from a network of universities (Berkeley, UCSF, USDC, U Washington, Johns Hopkins, Arkansas, and Emory) through shared curriculum, networking opportunities, and our NIH program webinar series."
The first cohort of three fellows (2020-2021) has already begun work at Stanford this fall, exploring and investigating the complex intersections of social and behavioral health science, epidemiology, data science, and population health.
“We are so fortunate to have an inaugural group of 3 superb students from different backgrounds," Lorene Nelson stated. "This new training grant has exciting potential to have a major foundational influence, developing new analytical methods that capitalize on the treasure trove of rich and high dimensional data now available through smart phones wearables, and other electronic devices.”
The Department of Epidemiology & Population Health (E&PH) opened in October 2019. We are Stanford’s academic and organizational home for studying factors that cause illness and impairment in human populations, offering expertise, research, and training on study design, data collection, analysis and proper interpretation of scientific evidence to improve human health in the clinic and in the field.