TICR Program Seminar for First-Year Master’s and Certificate Program Scholars

EPI 220/230 2021-2022 (1 unit)
Fall, Winter, and Spring Quarters
Course Director: Lydia Zablotska, MD, PhD
Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics


The TICR Program First-Year Seminar provides scholars the opportunity to have their research intensively critiqued by a group of interested peers and helps bring together in practical situations the theoretical topics covered in other parts of the TICR Program. It also gives scholars experience critiquing others' work, which will be a regular task in their professional activities. We start in Fall Quarter by reviewing protocols created in the Summer Designing Clinical Research course and then move in Winter and Spring to discussing the implementation of research, including questionnaires, procedures, abstracts, manuscripts, or new protocols.

The objectives for the seminar are for scholars to:

  • Practice applying concepts taught in TICR Program courses;
  • Obtain assistance with one's own research projects; and
  • Develop peer review skills.

Concurrent enrollment in the ATCR Certificate Program or Master's Degree Program in Clinical and Epidemiologic Research.

Seminar Leaders: Susan Buchbinder, MD
Phone: 415-437-7479
email: susan.buchbinder@ucsf.edu

Christine Dehlendorf, MD, MAS
Phone: 415-206-8712
email: Christine.Dehlendorf@ucsf.edu


Kerstin Kolodzie, MD, PhD, MAS
Phone: 415-885-3647
email: kerstin.kolodzie@ucsf.edu

  Lydia Zablotska, MD, PhD
Phone: 415-476-4673
email: lydia.zablotska@ucsf.edu

In Spring quarter, the Seminar will meet every other Tuesday afternoon starting on March 19 until May 24 from 3:15 PM to 5:00 PM.

Presentation scheduling

Everyone should expect to present at least twice and be a primary reviewer at least twice over the course of the year.

Section leaders will develop and maintain a schedule of presenters and reviewers. It is the scholar's responsibility to switch with a colleague when conflicts arise.

Content of sessions

Sessions will generally include reviews of two scholars' protocols or other materials.

The initial sessions are for Designing Clinical Research protocols. After these initial sessions are completed, scholars should present research or products they are actively developing, which may include (but are not limited to) new protocols (complete or partial), abstracts, manuscripts, grants, and other research products, based on presenter needs. The presenter should include a brief cover memo with specific questions/areas of focus, especially if submitting a large volume of materials for review by the group. Materials should be submitted through the CLE forum.

The review process structure is as follows:

  • The primary reviewer provides 5 minutes of review, including: a brief (ideally one sentence) summary and then a critique focusing on 3-5 important issues. Since everyone has read the protocol, there is no need to describe it in detail, and doing so decreases time for the discussion. Additional issues and minor edits can be addressed in writing and as time allows in discussion.
  • The section leaders guide the group discussion, starting with eliciting major comments from other scholars, providing an opportunity for the presenter to respond to major comments, and then working through the protocol.
  • Everyone writes additional comments as needed, embedded on the protocol or on a separate document, to give to the author.
  • If you cannot attend a session, you are responsible for providing a written critique, which should be posted on the presenter's forum


The author must upload the materials directly to their section's forum on the course's web-based syllabus by 5 pm on the Thursday prior to the session date.


Materials for each session will be posted several days prior to the session on the seminar's online syllabus.


Grades are Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) and will be based on attendance and participation.

The importance of attendance cannot be overemphasized. If you do not attend, you deprive yourself of the learning opportunity, but you also deprive your colleagues of your valuable feedback. We do understand that professional travel and health issues occasionally mean you will miss a session, and we expect that this may happen up to 2-3 times during the year for some scholars. For each absence, please:
- Inform your seminar leader ahead of time; and
- Submit written comments on each presenter's work on the forum.

If you anticipate missing more than three sessions during the year or more than one per quarter, please discuss this with your seminar leader.

UCSF Graduate Division Policy on Disabilities


This course is restricted to those enrolled in the Advanced Training in Clinical Research Certificate Program (ATCR) and the Master's in Clinical Research Degree Program.