Project Restrictions

Joint Projects Are Not Acceptable

Dissertations written jointly by two or more students are not acceptable. This does not mean that they may not work on related problems, but each student should have the experience of carrying out an investigation from beginning to end on his/her own initiative.

Research Involving Human Subjects

All research involving human subjects must be approved by the Human Investigation Committee  (HIC) of the School of Medicine. Applications and guidelines are available online or in the Office of the Chairman of the Committee, 47 College Street, Suite 208.

Research Done Outside of Yale

First-year students considering research at another institution

Research at another institution is discouraged in the summer of the first year. The reasons for this are as follows:

  1. It is important to get started on a project that has a high likelihood of being used for your thesis with a Yale faculty mentor at Yale. If you are working at Yale, you have ready access to either the laboratory or the study population and the mentor with whom you are working.
  2. Funding in the summer of the first year comes predominantly from training grants and Yale funds which require that the work to be done at Yale.
  3. Carrying out the work at Yale readily ensures that the student will receive excellent training in conducting research since the Yale faculty member knows the Yale thesis system and the responsibilities of the mentor.

For these reasons students are advised to begin their work at a Yale site with a Yale advisor in the summer of the first year.

If you decide to do research at another institution (non-Yale site for example, Harvard, Columbia, Stanford, etc.) you are responsible for obtaining your funding. You should be certain to have a Yale sponsor before you complete the arrangements at the other school because this Yale faculty sponsor will need to approve your application for partial funding (if allowed) and will make comments if this work is ultimately used for your thesis and will have the thesis reviewed in his or her department at Yale.

The above does not apply for research done after the first year.

Concerning your responsibility for funding if work is done at another institution in the summer of the first year:

  1. The responsibility for funding is yours.
  2. If there is a significant connection of the work to the Yale faculty sponsor, i.e. if you are using reagents from the Yale lab, if you are using study populations at Yale as well as the other institution, if you plan to continue the work in the Yale advisor’s group when you return to Yale etc. then it is possible to obtain half funding from Yale. This is the maximum funding that can be obtained if there is a legitimate connection to the Yale sponsor. If the Yale sponsor is serving as a passive conduit and is not taking an active role in examining the proposal, making suggestions, etc. then the student alone is responsible for obtaining complete funding generally from the other institution or from a national organization.

Obtaining funding from another institution:

Frequently, if the investigator at another institution is well funded they will readily fund all or half of your application. If they are not willing to do so you should reconsider this choice. The Office of Student Research is willing to make one phone cal to the P.I. at the outside institution to encourage them to provide full or partial funding. This is sometimes successful and sometimes not. Students should recognize that it is preferable to begin the work at Yale when research is begun in the summer of the first year.

Research at an outside institution done after the first year:

Students performing research at another institution other than the summer of the first year can receive full funding from the Office of Student Research if the following requirements are met:

  1. The application for funding for full-time research is approved a Yale faculty sponsor who will be responsible for reviewing the thesis and submitting the work in their department.
  2. This applies for both short-term funding and one-year medical student research fellowships, which also can be done at other institutions for some pullout fifth year programs (Sarnoff, Howard Hughes and institutions that have Doris Duke programs).

Second-year and beyond considering research at another institution:

A student may wish to undertake his/her research project under the supervision of a qualified full-time investigator who is not a member of the faculty of Yale University School of Medicine. The approval of an outside preceptor will be granted by the Office of Student Research upon receipt of a statement by a full time Yale faculty member acting as sponsor and mentor, in whose area the research work will be done. The statement should indicate the Yale mentor has approved the preceptor and the facilities available for the research project. The same regulations concerning the dates of submission and review by the appropriate departmental committee will apply to the thesis done outside of the medical school. Specifically, the faculty member will be responsible for reviewing the progress of the thesis with the student, reviewing the written thesis and giving faculty approval. The thesis will be reviewed by the Department Thesis Committee of this faculty member’s department.

Students in Combined Programs