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Date Updated: October 29, 2018

Application Process

Applicants should complete a Data Request form along with a 3 – 4 page proposal describing the purpose of the study; the specific research questions or research hypotheses; the variables to be included (e.g., predictor and outcome variables); and the proposed analyses. The description should indicate the importance, value or implications of the research, and plans for disseminating results.

Proposals should include a timeline (e.g., start and stop date; major milestones) and list members of the research team, along with their titles, affiliations, and a statement describing their roles in the proposed project. The applicant should submit a bio-sketch or CV. For those proposals that require data from organizations other than NBME (e.g., AAMC; medical schools), the investigator must include a statement that such organizations have agreed to make data available.

Proposals can be submitted by any investigator with a genuine interest in conducting original research in the field of measurement or assessment in health professions education. Preference is given to those with an established record of research, or who show promise of being able to complete a publishable research project.

Proposals may be submitted at any time to ors@nbme.org, but will be reviewed every February and June, with submission deadlines of December 1 and May 1.

Review Criteria and Process

Proposals are evaluated by NBME staff, with submitting investigators being notified of decisions in February and June.

Proposals are judged on the clarity of the research question, importance or value of the research, capability of data to answer the research question, quality of data analyses, qualifications of researchers, and researcher capability to maintain security of the data.

It is expected that multiple proposals will be submitted during any cycle. Approved proposals will be required to comply with NBME data security requirements. Data sharing projects will not be approved if there is risk that the investigator or others could determine the identity of individuals, programs, or institutions.

Complex proposals or those involving multiple organizations may require additional correspondence between the investigator and NBME to verify study details, to discuss certain conditions (e.g., possible fees, de-identification process), or to confirm that any third parties can supply the necessary data. Although NBME will facilitate such discussions, it is the investigator’s responsibility to anticipate such needs to allow time for such discussions.

The Data Request Form can be accessed here.

Please direct any questions to the Office of Research at ors@nbme.org.

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