Pre-Doctoral Trainee Application

The T32 predoctoral fellowship application is now closed


Cognitive Neuroscience of Communication — Connecticut: CNC-CT

The Program

Communication disorders affect millions of individuals, with a financial cost of over $500 billion and an even greater societal burden in terms of disability and quality of life. The development of assessment and treatment strategies requires that the next generation of researchers understand the mechanisms underlying these communication disorders, but progress has been hampered by a shortage of clinically knowledgeable communication scientists with the methodological skills required to study these underlying mechanisms. The current training plan will seeks to prepare predoctoral and postdoctoral trainees studying the cognitive neuroscience of communication to address these challenges by instilling them with the necessary methodological expertise and tools to conduct and disseminate impactful research on communication disorders while making meaningful connections with between trainees and the clinical populations they study.

Predoctoral trainees will participate in a two-year training program integrated with their home doctoral training program, consisting of a combination of core coursework in cognitive neuroscience theories and methods, (including methodological training), and coursework in typical and atypical communication. This program will emphasize the mutual relationship between basic science and outcomes for clinical populations such as dyslexia, aphasia, hearing loss, autism, and others. Trainees will work directly with people with communication disorders, supervised by clinical faculty, to gain a deeper understanding of the challenges faced by these communities.

Applicants must be U.S. citizens or Green Card holders.

Pre-Doctoral Trainees will receive:

  • Full stipend support for two years at full-time 12-month UConn levels (no teaching requirement), with subsequent support via typical departmental funding
  • Tuition &  health insurance covered
  • $800 annual travel allowance
  • Access to a pool of 240 MRI scan hours, as well as ready access to other tools, including EEG/ERP (in and out of scanner), TMS, tDCS, and eye tracking facilities.
  • Available funds for specialized methodological training

Requirements of the CNC-CT program:

  1. Customized path through the curriculum. Trainees will take one course in each of the following domains. For some doctoral training programs, these courses may also fulfill requirements of the home degree program. Funds are also available for specialized training (e.g. workshops or methods bootcamps).
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Typical Communication
  • Atypical Communication:  Students in CLIN or AuD/PhD may fulfill this requirement through clinical contact hours, lab rotations, and directed readings with a mentor.
  • Cognitive Neuroscience Methods

2. Additional courses and experiences to enhance training:

  • 2-credit Clinical Connection Practicum (taken each Fall of both years of funding).
  • 1-credit Professional Development Seminar (“SICSFLAGS” taken each Spring of both years of funding)
  • Attend TalkShop (weekly brownbag series) and Research Design Studio (approximately monthly research check-in meeting)
  • Coursework in the Responsible Conduct of Research
  1. Trainee-led research project:  All trainees will pursue independent research within the domain of the neurobiology of typical and atypical communication, culminating in a Second-Year Project.
  2. Participation in group research teams: Trainees also contribute to the Individual Differences Research Team or the Community-Engaged Research Team, working collaboratively with trainees and faculty. 
  3. IBACS Grant-writing Summer Program: (LINK) This program (or equivalent grant-writing training) to be taken typically the summer after the 2nd or 3rd year of the PhD program.