University of Southern California


Workshops & Training


Mandatory Training for Funded Investigators

All investigators funded by an externally sponsored project must complete grants management training, as explained here.

Research Training Finder

A search tool has been developed for USC faculty, PIs, postdocs, students, research staff and lab technicians. This tool is a comprehensive matrix for training courses that are required and suggested for University research compliance.

Center for Excellence in Research (CER) Workshops and Training

CER organizes a series of workshops for university researchers. These courses are designed to provide researchers across all fields of study with specialized skills and knowledge in seeking funding from government, foundation, and corporate organizations as well as a variety of other topics.

To receive updates about our workshops, please register for our mailing list.

A full calendar of events are listed below, or you can download the CER Spring 2019 Calendar.


Course Registration

To register, please RSVP at least a few days prior to the class via this form, indicating all the course(s) you are attending. For information about our workshops, contact the office at and 213-740-6709.







Conducting Culturally Competent Research with Diverse Populations
Lourdes Baezconde-Garbanati, Associate Dean for Community Initiatives, Keck
The demographics of the United States are rapidly changing, and researchers are increasingly being required to understand cultural differences, how they impact research, and how to engage diverse populations. This workshop will describe the benefits and challenges of conducting community-based tobacco research in five diverse populations: American Indian, Hispanic, African American, Korean and Non-Hispanic White. We’ll also describe the potential for engagement in community-based research through the Community Scholars Collaborative on Health Equity (CHES).
Audience: Faculty & Postdocs
January 15, 2019 | 12 – 2 PM | HSC NTT 7409

Conducting Community-Based Participatory Research to Promote Health Equity in Diverse Populations – PowerPoint
Joyce Javier, Assistant Professor of Clinical Pediatrics, CHLA
Dean Coffey, Assistant Professor of Clinical Pediatrics, CHLA
Aviril Sepulveda, Occupational Therapist, CHLA
Jed David, Occupational Therapist, CHLA
Horacio Lopez, Pediatrician, CHLA
Kamil Bantol, Research Assistant, CHLA
Ana Jayme, AMFT, Asian Pacific Counseling Treatment Center
Joel Jacinto, Commissioner to the Board of Public Works, City of Los Angeles
Understanding how to conduct culturally competent research is only the beginning, as researchers and communities must also learn to work together as a team. We’ll show you how to partner with communities to develop, conduct, and evaluate community-based participatory research by sharing how we’ve harnessed the strengths of the Filipino community to prevent adolescent mental health disparities. This workshop will include a panel discussion with our multidisciplinary team that’s funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholar Program.
Audience: Faculty & Postdocs
January 16, 2019 | 12 – 2 PM | CHLA Dale Melbourne Herklotz Conference Room

The State of Women in Academic Medicine- Career Flexibility as a Strategic Tool – PowerPoint
Amparo Villablanca, Director and Founder, UC Davis Women’s Cardiovascular Medicine Program
Amparo Villablanca will showcase accomplishments of women in medicine and highlight national data of women entering academic medicine in leadership roles, including history, national data and tools to help open the door of communication on this topic. Participants will have a better understanding of the national representation of women in academic medicine, mentorship, sponsorship and support for advancement of someone who has untapped leadership potential.
Audience: Faculty & Postdocs
January 17, 2019 | 11 – 12 PM | HSC NTT 7409
January 18, 2019 | 12 – 1 PM | CHLA Saban Research Building Auditorium


Obtaining Funding from Foundations and the USC Process – PowerPoint
Hossein Pourmand, Senior Executive Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations
There are thousands of charitable foundations with millions of dollars to give in the United States. The challenge, however, is finding the right one for you. This workshop focuses on the steps you need to develop a relationship with a foundation to fund your proposal. We’ll also discuss the USC process and resources available to help you pursue proposals with appropriate foundations.
Audience: Junior Faculty & Postdocs
February 6, 2019 | 12 – 2 PM | UPC CUB 329

Tell Me About Your Goals: Creating an Effective Oral Executive Summary – 1 & 2
Christopher J. Russell, Assistant Professor of Clinical Pediatrics, CHLA
You are your own best advocate, especially when it comes to your career. Come find out how best to communicate your goals and research vision. You’ll learn how to come up with a plan, organize activities to support it, and draft/practice your 30-second and two-minute ‘elevator speech.’ By the end, you’ll have two executive summaries to communicate your career and research goals for a variety of audiences, including department chairs, funders, etc.
Audience: Junior Faculty, Postdocs & Fellows
February 14, 2019 | 12 – 2 PM | CHLA John Stauffer A

Securing Corporate Funding for Your Research
Lawrence Lau, Associate Director of Corporate Collaborations, Physical and Information Sciences
In 2016, businesses provided $4.2 billion of academic R&D funding, largely directed toward life sciences and engineering. The importance of corporate funding to support your research can’t be overstated. Learn how to engage with industry and obtain funding. We’ll also discuss the commercialization process and how the USC Stevens Center can help you find a partner, negotiate a license, and assist with developing and marketing your product.
Audience: Faculty & Postdocs
February 20, 2019 | 12 – 2 PM | UPC CUB 329

Creating a Successful NSF Broader Impacts Section
Heidi Smith Parker, Grant Strategist, Dornsife
Dieuwertje Kast, Project Specialist, Joint Educational Project, Dornsife
Katie Mills, Director, VAST PreK-12 STEM Outreach, Viterbi
If you’ve applied for NSF funding, then you’re familiar with the Broader Impacts section. A great Broader Impacts statement won’t strengthen a proposal with poor science, but a poor one can help sink a proposal with good science. Learn how to develop and showcase your NSF Broader Impacts. This workshop will include examples of creative Broader Impacts strategies and a brainstorming session to help you develop your ideas, as well as an in-depth overview of resources at USC.
Audience: Faculty & Postdocs
February 25, 2019 | 1 – 3 PM | UPC CUB 329


Using Python and Other Tools to Archive and Use Twitter Data
Andrzej Rutkowski, Visualization Specialist, VKC Library
Stacy R. Williams, Head, Architecture and Fine Arts Library
Social media has increasingly become part of the research process for a wide variety of academic disciplines. We’ll introduce you to the Andrew W. Mellon-funded DocNow project to better understand how social media data, especially on Twitter, can be used for research. We will demo some of their tools like TWARC, which allows you to archive Twitter JSON data.
Audience: Faculty & Postdocs
March 5, 2019 | 12 – 2 PM | UPC VKC Library Multimedia Room

Increase Your Research Impact: Publishing Your Work via Open Access
Melanee Vicedo, Head, Education and Social Work Library Services
John Juricek, Collections Strategist Librarian, Co-Associate Dean, Collections
OA publishing can increase the exposure and impact of your research by making your articles and findings more accessible to a wider audience. This workshop will cover the basics of OA, the different models used by publishers, strategies for locating appropriate OA journals in various subject areas, possible OA mandates from funders, and guidance in evaluating publishers and journals.
Audience: Faculty & Postdocs
March 7, 2019 | 12 – 1:30 PM | UPC VKC Library Multimedia Room

CANCELED – Women in Science and Health: Speed Dating Mentoring Event
Shannon Mumenthaler, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Keck
Christina Dieli-Conwright, Assistant Professor of Research, Ostrow
Ruth Wood, Associate Dean for Appointments and Promotions, Keck
The number of women in science has increased steadily over the past several decades — thanks in part to having role models and mentors whose career paths they can follow. In a ‘speed dating’ format, you’ll have the opportunity to discuss the challenges and rewards facing women scientists at all levels and share your ongoing research efforts to identify peers and mentors.

Audience: Faculty & Postdocs
March 8, 2019 | 12 – 2 PM | HSC Sullivan Technology Center CHP 157

Using Dimensions to Find Collaborators, Identify Competitors, and Fully Understand Your Research Landscape
Silvia da Costa, Director of Faculty Research Relations, Office of Research
David Hellard, Program Administrator, Research Office, School of Pharmacy
Stacey Croomes, Contracts & Grants Coordinator, Sol Price School of Public Policy
The Dimensions Platform is free to USC faculty, students and staff and provides detailed information on worldwide funded grants, publications, citations, clinical trials, patents and policy documents. A panel of faculty and staff will guide you through simple steps on using the database and provide specific examples on how it has benefited their work.
Audience: Faculty, Postdocs & Research Administrators
March 12, 2019 | 1 – 3 PM | UPC CUB 329
April 9, 2019 | 1 – 3 PM | HSC NTT 7409

Successful Strategies for a Mission Agency Young Investigator / Early Career Award
James Murday, Director of Physical Sciences, Washington DC Research Advancement Office
Mission agencies are federal agencies that support research as a means of furthering the agencies’ goals such as securing national defense, addressing national energy challenges, etc. This workshop is designed for those who plan to apply for a Young Investigator/Early Career Award from a mission agency and will provide tips on how to structure a successful proposal, the amount of funding available, guidance toward topic selection, and due dates.
Audience: Junior Faculty
March 19, 2019 | 1 – 3 PM | UPC CUB 329

Essential Components of a Data Management Plan and USC Resources to Store Your Data
James Murday, Director of Physical Sciences, Washington DC Research Advancement Office
Asbed Bedrossian, Director of Enterprise Middleware Applications, Information Technology Services
Judy Genovese, Senior Transactions Officer, USC Stevens Center for Innovation
Eimmy Solis, Social Sciences Data Librarian, USC Libraries
Shalini Ramachandran, Science and Engineering Librarian, USC Libraries
Jennifer Dinalo, Associate Director of Research Services, Norris Medical Library
Does your DMP include all essential components? How do you address intellectual property rights? What free resources are available at USC? Come hear from experts about Federal Agency requirements on Data Management. They’ll also offer tips and guidance on how to prepare proposals to meet funder requirements and promote research transparency. Panelists will provide information on data services and storage resources available through USC Libraries and IT Services.
Audience: Faculty & Postdocs
March 21, 2019 | 12 – 2 PM | UPC CUB 329
April 16, 2019 | 12 – 2 PM | HSC NTT 7409

Designing Clinical Mixed Methods Research
Anita Schmidt, Research Manager, Division of Emergency and Transport Medicine, CHLA
Phung Pham, Data Analyst, Division of Emergency and Transport Medicine, CHLA
Mixed methods research offers investigators the opportunity to answer clinical questions with a broader perspective by using a quantitative and qualitative approach. However, because this discipline is evolving quickly, few tools exist for guiding and assessing this type of inquiry. This workshop will discuss mixed methods designs, allow you to develop study plans to answer research questions, present data collection techniques and discuss strategies for reporting of data mixing.
Audience: Faculty & Postdocs
March 22, 2019 | 11:30 – 1:30 PM | CHLA John Stauffer A+B

Keeping Them Awake and Interested: Elements of Engaging Research
Mark R. Frey, Associate Professor of Pediatrics, CHLA
Senta Georgia, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, CHLA
When asked, many people say public speaking is one of their biggest fears. Yet standing in front of a group isn’t the only obstacle, you also need to know just what to say. Mark Frey and Senta Georgia will describe and demonstrate approaches used by effective speakers, followed by small group peer critiques so that you can get feedback on quick-shot talks. By the end, you’ll have learned new ways to engage an audience, how to define and communicate the central topic of a talk, and acquire new tools for editing a presentation for clarity and impact.
Audience: Faculty & Postdocs
March 29, 2019 | 12 – 1:30 PM | CHLA John Stauffer A+B


How to Obtain NIH Funding
Steven Moldin, Executive Director of Research Advancement, Office of Research
The NIH invests nearly $37.3 billion a year to medical research, and more than 80% of that is awarded through almost 50,000 competitive grants. This workshop will educate investigators in the complete process of conceptualizing an NIH grant proposal, structuring the application, submitting it for peer review, and working with Institute staff to get the application funded. This includes identifying which NIH Institute to target, the NIH’s funding priorities, how to prepare for the review process, and building relationships with funding agencies.
Audience: Faculty & Postdocs
April 3, 2019 | 12 – 2 PM | UPC CUB 329

Preparing and Submitting NSF CAREER Award Proposals
Randolph Hall, Vice President, Office of Research
The Faculty Early Career Development Program (otherwise known as the NSF CAREER Award) is one of NSF’s most prestigious awards. It supports junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations. This workshop will provide you insight into the requirements as well as proposal process for this award.
Audience: Junior Faculty
April 25, 2019 | 12 -2 PM | UPC CUB 329