Committee on Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS)

The Committee on Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS) is an independent academic unit based in the University’s Biological Sciences Division (BSD). With support from CHeSS and the Institute for Translational Medicine, we advance multidisciplinary training in clinical and translational science at the University of Chicago and develop high-quality coursework for researchers and students committed to significantly impacting medical science and practice.

The CCTS supports the development of curriculum in clinical and translational science at the University. Courses are designed to provide undergraduates, graduate-level trainees, postdoctoral fellows, and junior faculty with state-of-the-art skills in the field. For more information, please contact Kelsey Bogue, CHeSS Director of Training Programs & Communications, at kbogue@bsd.uchicago.edu.

Current Areas of Concentration include:

  • Comparative Effectiveness Research
  • Translational Informatics
  • Health Services Research
  • Quality and Safety
  • Clinical Research
  • Community-Based Research
  • Global Health
  • Pharmacogenomics

View Past CCTS courses here.

Winter 2020 Courses 

Health Disparities in Breast Cancer—CCTS 20400
Instructor: M. Eileen Dolan, Suzanne D. Conzen
Time: Monday, and Wednesday 3:00-4:20 PM
Location: TBA
Notes: BIOS 25108 is a prerequisite for this course.

Across the globe, breast cancer is the most common women’s cancer. In the last two decades, there have been significant advances in breast cancer detection and treatment that have resulted in improved survival rates. Yet, not all populations have benefited equally from these improvements, and there continues to be a disproportionate burden of breast cancer felt by different populations. In the U.S., for example, white women have the highest incidence of breast cancer but African-American women have the highest breast cancer mortality overall. The socioeconomic, environmental, biological, and cultural factors that collectively contribute to these disparities are being identified with a growing emphasis on health disparities research efforts. In this 10-week discussion-based course students will meet twice weekly and cover major aspects of breast cancer disparities.

 

Machine Learning & Advanced Analytics For Biomedicine—CCTS 20500/40500 and BIOS 29208
Instructor: Ishanu Chattopadhyay
Time: Monday 4:30-7:20 PM
Location: TBA
Notes: Rudimentary knowledge of probability theory, and basic exposure to scripting languages such as python/R is required. This course does not qualify in the Biological Sciences major.

The age of ubiquitous data is rapidly transforming scientific research, and advanced analytics powered by sophisticated learning algorithms is uncovering new insights in complex open problems in biology and biomedicine. The goal of this course is to provide an introductory overview of the key concepts in machine learning, outlining the potential applications in biomedicine. Beginning from basic statistical concepts, we will discuss concepts and implementations of standard and state of the art classification and prediction algorithms, and go on to discuss more advanced topics in unsupervised learning, deep learning architectures, and stochastic time series analysis. We will also cover emerging ideas in data-driven causal inference, and demonstrate applications in uncovering etiological insights from large scale clinical databases of electronic health records, and publicly available sequence and omics datasets. The acquisition of hands-on skills will be emphasized over machine learning theory. On successfully completing the course, students will have acquired enough knowledge of the underlying machinery to intuit and implement solutions to non-trivial data science problems arising in biology and medicine.

 

The Challenges Of The “Good Physician”: Virtue, Wisdom and the Practice of Medicine (Scholars in Ethics and Medicine Cohort)—CCTS 21005/41005
Instructor: John Yoon, Michael Hawking
Time: TBA
Location: TBA
Notes: This is a yearlong course. Students must register for Autumn, Winter, and Spring Quarters to receive 100 units at the end of Spring 2020.

The Scholars in Ethics and Medicine (SEM) program is a yearlong opportunity for a select group of students to collaborate with exemplar physician-scholars and medical ethicists to think through the features required of a good health care clinician. Members of the group collaborate with invited speakers through participation in seminars and small group dinner discussions. Throughout the program, students will think through issues in medical ethics related to the year’s theme will be Virtue, Wisdom, and the Practice of Medicine. The practice of medicine focuses on actions that are intended to promote health and healing, and to do so in ways that are respectful and compassionate. To be aimed at health and to be consistent with our ethical obligations, these actions need to be of a certain kind regarding the ends they pursue and the means they employ. This is to say that these actions need the virtue of practical wisdom, by which we identify the best means to achieve worthwhile ends. How we understand which ends are worthwhile and which means are best will depend on the virtues that guide not only our thoughts and motivations, but also our vision. For virtue influences not only our actions and motivations, but how we see world.  The Scholars in Ethics and Medicine will together explore deep connections between action, vision, wisdom, and virtue as they relate health and healing, in particular how wisdom and virtue are important for seeing patients as whole people, not just bodies to be fixed, in offering compassionate care, among others. More information can be found here: https://hydeparkinstitute.org/hpi-scholars-in-ethics-and-medicine/

 

Global Health Sciences III: Biological And Social Determinants Of Health—CCTS 22003/42003 and BIOS 29814
Instructor: Christopher Olopade, Olufunmilayo Olopade
Time: TBA
Location: TBA
Notes: Admission to Paris Global Health Program.

Global health is an interdisciplinary and empirical field, requiring holistic and innovative approaches to navigate an ever-changing environment in the pursuit of health equity. This course will emphasize specific health challenges facing vulnerable populations in low resource settings including in the United States and the large scale social, political, and economic forces that contribute to them through topical events and case studies. Students will study the importance of science and technology, key institutions and stakeholders; environmental impacts on health; ethical considerations in research and interventions; maternal and child health; health and human rights; international legal frameworks and global health diplomacy. Students will gain skills in technical writing as they construct position statements and policy briefs on global health issues of interest. Career opportunities in global health will be explored throughout the course.

 

Scientists Advancing The Forefront—CCTS 33000
Instructors: Erika Claud, Ronald Cohen
Time: Winter Quarter – Mondays 2:00-3:00 PM; Spring Quarter dates and times are to be determined
Location: BSLC (Room TBA)
Note: To receive 50 credit units, registration in both winter and spring quarters is required. Students should email kbogue@bsd.uchicago.edu to register for the course. All grades in the course are pass/fail and are based on attendance and participation.

In this survey course, leading basic and translational biomedical scientists will review cutting-edge themes that constitute the forefront of medical research. Learners will emerge with a broad understanding of:

  • How these scientific themes relate to human health
  • How scientists develop and apply new knowledge about each theme to improve the human condition
  • The career paths of physician-scientists

All Pritzker School of Medicine MS1 students are eligible to enroll in the course. The course is highly recommended for students interested in the Basic Sciences Scholarship & Discovery Track and required for students interested in applying for the Burroughs Wellcome Fund Research Year Fellowship through the BEST-PREP program.  Non-PSOM students, postdoctoral fellows, and faculty may enroll or audit with approval. To register, all prospective students should email Kelsey Bogue at kbogue@bsd.uchicago.edu. 

 

Advanced Community Based Participatory Research (Cbpr) Training Program 1—CCTS 47001
Instructor: Deborah Burnet, Doriane Miller
Time: Friday 12:00-1:00 PM
Location: TBA

The goal of health-related research is to improve the lives of people in the community studied. In traditional research, the community is not actively involved in designing the projects. Community-based participatory research is a partnership approach to research that equitably involves community members, organizational representatives, and academic researchers in all aspects of the research process. The Advanced CBPR Training Program is designed to help meet the growing need and demand for educational resources that help build the knowledge and skills needed to develop and sustain effective CBPR partnerships. The Program consists of six sessions that are offered on various Fridays throughout the year.

 

Introduction To Global Health—CCTS 43000
Instructor: Christine Babcock, Keegan Checkett
Time: Tuesday, Thursday 12:30-1:50 PM
Location: TBA
Notes: Open to advanced Undergraduates and Graduate Students. This course does not meet the requirements of the
Biological Sciences Major.

This course provides an overview of global health from the historical perspective to the current state of global health. The course features weekly guest lecturers with a broad range of expertise in the field: topics include the social and economic determinants of health, the economics of global health, global burden of disease, and globalization of health risks, as well as the importance of ethics, human rights, and diplomacy in promoting a healthier world. The course is designed for graduate-level students and senior undergraduates with an interest in global health work in resource-limited settings.

 

Advanced Community Based Participatory Research (Cbpr) Training Program 2—CCTS 47002
Instructor: Deborah Burnet, Doriane Miller
Time: Tuesday, Thursday 12:00-12:00 AM
Location: TBA
Notes: Registrants who wish to receive 025 credits of course credit must register for CCTS 47001 in the fall and CCTS
47002 in the winter. They must also register online at http://itm.uchicago.edu/education/courses/advanced-cbpr-training/

The goal of health-related research is to improve the lives of people in the community studied. In traditional research, the community is not actively involved in designing the projects. Community-based participatory research is a partnership approach to research that equitably involves community members, organizational representatives, and academic researchers in all aspects of the research process. The Advanced CBPR Training Program is designed to help meet the growing need and demand for educational resources that help build the knowledge and skills needed to develop and sustain effective CBPR partnerships. The Program consists of six sessions that are offered on various Fridays throughout the year.

 

Methods In Health And Biomedical Informatics II—CCTS 47006
Instructor: Samuel Volchenboum
Time: Tuesday, Thursday 12:30-1:50 PM
Location: BHM 214
Notes: Must have taken CCTS 47005 during Fall 2018. See chess.uchicago.edu/CCTS for more information or contact
kbogue@bsd.uchicago.edu for more information.

Most Health and Biomedical Informatics (HBMI) Graduate Programs around the country have independently come to the conclusion that the computational methods that informatics graduate students need to be familiar with is too broad and numerous to be addressed by a series of independent courses. Therefore, most programs have created a set of integrated courses that expose the students to a wide variety of informatics methods in short modules. Typically, these required methods series are organized as a series of required courses taken during the first year of graduate study. This course is the result of discussions by Health and Biomedical Informatics researchers and educators from the Chicago Biomedical Informatics Training (CBIT) initiative. This course is designed as the second course of a year-long sequence and is worth 100 units. Registration for the full year is expected.

 

Eligibility

The CCTS provides quality clinical and translational science training to postdoctoral BSD fellows; advanced graduate students in the biological and social sciences; and junior faculty. However, many courses may be relevant to undergraduates, medical students, and/or more advanced faculty. We encourage interested students, fellows, or faculty members to consider our offerings. Please contact Kelsey  Bogue, CCTS administrator, at kbogue@bsd.uchicago.edu with any questions.

How to Enroll

Interested trainees may take advantage of CCTS offerings in any of the following ways:

  • Enroll in the individual course(s) most relevant to their planned research or field of study;
  • Complete an Area of Concentration curriculum in conjunction with a master’s degree through the Department of Public Health Sciences;
  • Attend any of our ongoing lectures or seminar series.

There is no formal application process for participation in most CCTS courses, but we encourage trainees to reach out to faculty instructors prior to enrolling in a course. Students who wish to take courses for academic credit must enroll through the University Registrar. Some courses will also have a separate registration form that you can find on this webpage or in the CHeSS newsletter. For more information on how to enroll, please contact CCTS administrator Kelsey Bogue at kbogue@bsd.uchicago.edu.

Support

The CCTS is supported by the Institute for Translational Medicine, which is funded by an NIH-sponsored Clinical & Translational Science Award (CTSA). Additional support is provided by CHeSS.

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