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Student Research

Close up photo of a student in a lab picking up a test tube

The importance of hypothesis-driven research

Along with clinical observation and deduction, hypothesis-driven research is an integral part of medical knowledge and understanding. Because of this, research is strongly woven into your M.D. Program education and curriculum.

Throughout our Doctor of Medicine program, you’ll have ample opportunities for research. You'll have ready access to Mayo's extensive research resources, more than 6 million medical histories and dozens of well-staffed research core facilities.

Research experience quarter

Your biggest research opportunity begins after you’ve been introduced to the basic sciences and have completed your clinical experiences. During your research quarter in Year 3, you’ll be exposed to the principles and process of biomedical research. You’ll work with a research project adviser faculty member to choose and facilitate a research project that explores an area of interest at a very in-depth level.

This process includes:

  • Learning the discipline and rigor of hypothesis-driven research
  • Reviewing and critically evaluating the existing literature as a basis for proposal
  • Writing a proposal to justify and describe the studies that the student will complete
  • Completing the studies under the direction of an experienced investigator
  • Learning the skills to present scientific data at a local or national meeting by presenting research
  • Writing a scientific paper for publication (the Medical Communication Element)

Additional research options

We help facilitate your research interest areas in any way possible. Here are just a few options students choose to pursue:

  • Major biomedical research project. This involves completion of a full-time research project at Mayo Clinic's campus in Rochester, Minnesota; Phoenix/Scottsdale, Arizona; or Jacksonville, Florida, under the direction of a faculty member. Most students complete this option.
  • Teaching assistant in anatomy and biomedical research project. Students selected to serve as teaching assistants during the Human Structure and Normal Function blocks may undertake a more limited research project.
  • Major off-campus biomedical research project. On occasion, you may make arrangements to spend the research requirement off-campus under the supervision of faculty at another institution. In requesting such an option, your research proposal must represent an exceptional opportunity in research, and the supervising mentor must be an established investigator at the host institution.

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Mayo Clinic research by the numbers

Mayo Clinic statistics about research staff, faculty, facilities and space, studies, publications, and grants