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Randomized Clinical Trials (RCT)

Informaton on previous institutes can be found here

Twelfth Annual
Summer Institute on Randomized
Behavioral Clinical Trials
July 15-27, 2012

Applications will be due Friday, February 3, 2012

Airlie Conference Center
Warrenton, Virginia

Table of Contents


To provide a thorough grounding in the conduct of randomized clinical trials to researchers and health professionals interested in developing competence in the planning, design, and execution of randomized clinical trials involving behavioral interventions. The curriculum will enable participants to:

  • Describe the principles underlying the conduct of unbiased clinical trials.
  • Identify the unique challenges posed by behavioral randomized clinical trials (RCTs).
  • Evaluate alternative RCT designs in terms of their appropriateness to scientific and clinical goals.
  • Select appropriate strategies for enrollment, randomization, and retention of participants.
  • Understand methods for monitoring, coordinating, and conducting RCTs.
  • Develop strategies for appropriate statistical analyses of RCT data.
  • Evaluate the quality of behavioral RCTs and interpret their results.
  • Design an RCT with your working group on an assigned topic.

Please see the course schedule for 2011word document icon (57KB) as an example of the course’s content. Note that the content for 2012 is subject to change.

Dates and Location

The Summer Institute will begin with dinner on Sunday, July 15, 2012 and conclude after lunch on Friday, July 27, 2012.

The course will be held at the Airlie Conference Centerexternal link in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains in Northern Virginia, providing a serene atmosphere for work and thought in a community of scholars. Warrenton, VA is approximately 60 minutes driving time from Washington, D.C., and is close to recreational areas such as the Shenandoah National Park external link and Luray Cavernsexternal link. Lodging, meals, and instruction will take place at the Conference Center.

The Organizer, Sponsor, & Faculty

The Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (OBSSR) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is the organizer and sponsor of these annual summer training institutes in collaboration with the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI).

Faculty of summer institutes consist of leading authorities in their fields, with extensive prior experience in the conduct of major clinical trials, with specializations in psychology, behavioral medicine, psychosomatic medicine, gerontology, oncology, cardiovascular diseases, mental health, statistics, randomized clinical trials, and other areas.

The Faculty participating includes:

  • Walter Ambrosius, Ph.D.
  • Kenneth Freedland, Ph.D.
  • Robert Kaplan, Ph.D.
  • Peter Kaufmann, Ph.D.
  • Caryn Lerman, Ph.D.
  • David Murray, Ph.D.
  • Lynda Powell, Ph.D.
  • DeJuran Richardson, Ph.D.
  • Joseph Schwartz, Ph.D.
  • Catherine Stoney, Ph.D.
  • Deborah Zarin, M.D.

Others pending confirmation

Eligibility Requirements for Summer Fellows

Priority will be given to individuals who have received their PhD or MD (or equivalent degrees) between 2005 and 2010. Applicants must have at least two years of research experience. Applicants should not yet have achieved a tenured position at their institution. (The typical past participant has had 4-5 years of research experience.) Beyond these eligibility criteria we are seeking researchers who have demonstrated research potential and experience and who will clearly benefit from behavioral randomized controlled trial training. The ideal candidate will be actively pursuing an independent research career, in behavioral randomized clinical trials.

Further, those who have extensive research experience will only be considered after more junior investigators have been evaluated. Preference is also given to individuals who are not employees of NIH. While we will consider and may even accept exceptional applicants who do not meet the above criteria, priority will go to those who do.

Due to the limited number of spaces in the course, applicants must be citizens or non-citizen nationals of the United States, or must have been lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence (i.e., possess a currently valid Alien Registration Receipt Card I-551, or other legal verification of such status). Women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply.

Reasonable Accommodations for Disabilities: If you are accepted to attend the summer institute and require reasonable accommodations for disabilities to participate in this activity, at least 60 business days before the course begins please contact Dr. Peter Kaufmann at

Costs and Stipends

The Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research, NIH, will pay for travel to and from the Summer Institute site, room and board, and for course materials. Family members may accompany participants at their own costs.

Application Procedures

The Summer Institute is open for applications. Please visit to do so. You may also join the listserv (see below) for an announcement. Questions about the application process should be directed to Ms. Diane Smith at 817-891-1946 or

Future Announcements

Join the electronic mailing list (LISTSERV) for forthcoming announcements by —

Sending an e-mail message to from the mailing address at which you want to receive announcements.

The body of the message should read SUBscribe RCT-L [your full name].

The message is case sensitive; so capitalize as indicated! Don't include the brackets.

The Subject line should be blank

For example, for Robin Smith to subscribe, the message would read SUBscribe RCT-L Robin Smith. You will receive a confirmation of your subscription along with instructions on how to use the LISTSERV (including how to unsubscribe).

Contact Information

Do you have questions about the course? Please address them to:

Peter G. Kaufmann, Ph.D.
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
6701 Rocklegde Drive.
Rockledge II, MSC 7936
Bethesda, MD 20892-7936

Last Updated: October 2011

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