PCOR/CER K12 Scholars Program

The Brown University PCOR/CER Scholars program provides unique interdisciplinary training opportunities to prepare scholars to become independent investigators in Comparative Effectiveness Research (CER) and Patient-Centered Outcomes Research (PCOR). Funded through the AHRQ Patient Centered Outcomes Research (PCOR) Institutional Mentored Career Development Program (K12), the program aims to;  

  • Recruit highly qualified, motivated, and socio-demographically diverse post-doctoral candidates and junior faculty from both within and outside the Brown community as scholars.
  • Develop scholars’ proficiency in CER methods, stakeholder engagement, research ethics, leadership development, manuscript preparation, and grantsmanship.
  • Individualize each scholar’s career development plan according to his or her background and future career goals.

The Brown University School of Public Health in collaboration with its research centers and collaborative partners provide didactic, experiential learning, research opportunities and mentorship for the scholars.


The National Institutes of Health (NIH) “K awards” are considered career development awards. These awards are typically for individuals with doctoral level training in the health professions and support individuals after they have completed clinical training and have accepted a faculty position . These mentored K awards support early career investigators with protected time for research and career development and facilitate the transition to full independent research awards.

The NIH describes the K12 grant mechanism as “…support[ing] a newly trained clinician appointed by an institution for development of independent research skills and experience in a fundamental science within the framework of an interdisciplinary research and development program. ”

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality's (AHRQ's) Patient-Centered Outcomes Research (PCOR) Institutional Award (K12) supports the career development of post-doctoral fellows and/or junior faculty in methods to conduct PCOR. The PCOR Trust Fund provides funding for AHRQ to disseminate research findings, train researchers, and build capacity for research. Section 6301(b) of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act enacted Section 937(e) of the Public Health Service Act, authorizing AHRQ to build capacity for comparative effectiveness research by establishing grant programs that provide training of researchers in methods to conduct research.

For further information on K awards, please visit the NIH K Kiosk.

For further information on the AHRQ K12 program, please visit the AHRQ Fact Sheet.