Research Track

Neurology Residency Research Track Program (Optional)

Neuroscience research is advancing at a staggering pace. Over the past decade, there have been many important breakthroughs in our understanding of the genetic, cellular, molecular and system-based mechanisms of neurodegenerative disorders, neuromuscular disease, ischemic brain injury, epilepsy, neuro-oncology and neuroimmune mediated disorders. Increasingly, these advances are being translated into clinical neurology. Neurology is positioned at the nexus of scientific and clinical advances in the biomedical field.

The Department of Neurology at the University of Washington (UW) has an extensive research program. A large number of faculty members participate in a wide range of research areas, successfully obtaining research support from federal, state, local and private sources. The scientific efforts of our faculty are considerably enhanced by the world-class research ambiance of the campus as a whole. UW is internationally recognized as a center for neuroscience research and for over twenty-five years has been among the very top universities in total NIH funding. Our graduate training programs, including our Neurobiology and Behavior Ph.D. program and the Medical Scientist Training Program, compete for the best candidates in the United States. The research environment at UW includes the active research programs of neurology faculty who are located at several nearby affiliate sites including Harborview Medical Center (HMC), Puget Sound Veteran's Administration Medical Center, Seattle Children's Hospital and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (FHCRC). The research programs at these sites are interactive and synergistic with those on the main campus. The campuses are linked by a convenient University operated shuttle service that is free to faculty and staff.

Specific activities in the Department of Neurology include molecular and cell biology, neuroimmunology, systems and cellular neuroscience, neurogenetics, clinical neuro-pharmacology as well as social and epidemiological approaches to the study of neurological diseases. The UW Neurology department has developed an excellent track record in training not only outstanding clinical neurologists, but also successful academic neurologists/neuroscientists who have gone on to help advance basic and translational research in the field. Graduates of our program have competed successfully for NIH funding and currently hold academic faculty positions at major universities throughout the United States. Many other residents and fellows in our program receive independent support for research from the department in route to obtaining their own funding through NIH or other independent funding mechanisms.


One of our top priorities is to continue to train future leaders in academic neurology who participate in clinical, translational and basic neuroscience.  The UW Neurology Residency Research Track Program (NRRTP) was developed specifically to support the research interests of residents during training.  In addition, the NRRTP seeks to help research-oriented neurology residents identify and apply for outstanding post-residency research/academic opportunities.

What the program includes:

  • Up to 6-months of elective time during residency to focus on research
  • A didactic series (open to all residents but required for NRRTP residents) focused on developing the skills needed for a successful research career
  • Mentored support to explore careers in academic neurology/biomedical research
  • A network of basic and clinical research mentors from which NRRTP residents can choose to obtain research exposure and mentorship during residency.
  • Forums/venues/resources for NRRTP residents to present their research in both informal and symposium based settings.