MD Program Opportunities: Research
Students wearing white coats and goggles while working

Discover and Apply

Gain valuable experience in your area of interest.

Forefront of Curiosity

As a top-funded institution, the University of Michigan Medical School is an ideal training ground for research. Students enjoy access to world-class research mentors who love to collaborate and share their expertise, not to mention the vast laboratory resources that come with this level of excellence.

Not only are you more prepared to support the changing face of medicine, you become more competitive for post-graduate residency training, too. It’s a win all around.

By the Numbers
$746 million
Total awards
Active clinical studies
1.6+ million
Square feet of research space
Howard Hughes Medical Institute Fellows
Institute of Medicine Members
You've Got Options
Doctors in lab coats reading paper work together

The University of Michigan Medical School fosters a wide range of research, which creates tremendous learning opportunities for our students:

  • Basic science research: We have a large number of laboratories in the basic sciences aimed at specific diseases, which many of our physicians manage.
  • Clinical research: These projects involve direct interaction with patients or patient data. Most of our students do not have any clinical research experience before entering med school, so these opportunities are among the most popular.
  • Translational research: This type of research takes basic science discoveries and applies them to patient care or patient outcomes in a clinical setting. Michigan is known as a translational research powerhouse due in part to our highly connected clinical and basic science campuses.
  • Outcomes research: This research applies rigorous, methodical tools of scientific investigation to questions of effectiveness, access, value, affordability, quality and safety in healthcare. Our Institute for Healthcare Policy & Innovation brings together top researchers from our schools of medicine, nursing, social work, law, business, public policy and others to provide unbiased data and analysis of these questions.

The ability of a student to evaluate and perform research is critical to improving healthcare. Students should come to Michigan and be prepared to become leader in medicine, and research is one way to prepare them for that."

Benjamin Margolis
MD, Professor, Department of Internal Medicine

Scientific Discovery Path of Excellence

As an entering M1, you will review and select a Path of Excellence as part of your medical school curriculum. The Scientific Discovery Path of Excellence introduces students to the wide spectrum of research available to physician scientists. By the start of the first Branch year, you will select a research mentor based on your area of interest and identify a project to be completed as the Path of Excellence capstone requirement.

Learn more about the Scientific Discovery Path of Excellence.

Short Term Biomedical Research Training Program (SBRP)

When you enter the Branches, you may choose to add a research elective to your schedule and apply for the Short Term Biomedical Research Training Program. This 8-week program is funded by an NIH training grant and pays a stipend of $4,300. Students may select any University of Michigan faculty member as a mentor in a broad range of interests. 

Michigan Journal of Medicine

The Michigan Journal of Medicine (MJM) is a peer-reviewed, student-led organization designed to highlight the professional student body at the University of Michigan and publish high-quality biomedical, translational and clinical research to the scientific community at large. This journal is focused on helping future physician-scientists develop a leadership portfolio within the publishing community and become familiar with the review process. Submissions are solicited from members of several graduate programs including, but not limited to, students within the schools of medicine, dentistry, nursing, public policy and social work. 

Published annually (except for 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic), the MJM features a variety of content beyond traditional original research manuscripts including pieces on medical innovation, case reports, perspective pieces and brief communications. All medical students, including those taking a leave of absence, away on a dual degree or part of the medical scientist training program, are eligible for the organization's leadership positions.

Learn more about the Michigan Journal of Medicine.

MD/PHD - Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP)

Student working on computer

The MSTP is a joint effort of University of Michigan graduate and medical schools to provide a superb and balanced training in science and medicine. Ten to twelve new fellowships are awarded each year to outstanding dedicated students who are committed to a career in biomedical research. Fellows receive full tuition stipend support and health insurance coverage.

Completing the MSTP curriculum generally requires seven to eight full calendar years, including summer lab rotations. Application to this program can be made concurrently with application to the Medical School; MSTP also allows application from students in first- and second- year classes.

Learn about the MSTP dual degree program.