Program Curriculum

The RAM Scholar will receive training and guidance at an annual retreat in Boston, and at the College on Problems of Drug Dependence (CPDD) meeting.

The curriculum covers major advances in the field of clinical Addiction Medicine research presented through retreat-based didactic and workshop sessions, as well as research-in-progress and content-driven webinars.


Babak Tofighi, MD, shares his research project while gaining feedback.

Mentoring will be provided by the RAMS Program’s National Advisory Committee (NAC). Participants will have the opportunity to meet one-on-one with NAC mentors to discuss their research project and work with a biostatistician to develop an analytical plan.



Sarah Bagley, MD, and Patrick O’Connor, MD, Program Co-Director, and NAC Mentor

 In addition to sessions held among the CPDD program sessions, Scholars will attend several additional program sessions during the conference that focus on networking and career development.

The curriculum includes:


  • Epidemiology, neurobiology, and genetics
  • Pharmacology of substances of abuse
  • Relationship of HIV, HCV and substance use


  • Explore career opportunities that incorporate Addiction Medicine research
  • Review of clinically relevant Addiction Medicine research
  • Human Subjects Research Training


  • Develop a research project in the field of Addiction Medicine
  • One-on-one meetings with program faculty (including a biostatistician) to advance research idea
  • Financial support is available to help facilitate the implementation of research idea (e.g. data collection, data analysis, course work)


  • Provide training for instituitonal mentors at Scholars’ institutions
  • Review goals and approaches for effective mentoring
  • Actively participate in Scholars’ research projects


  • Participants will receive a variety of valuable resources, including RAMS slide presentations and up-to-date reference materials, and will have access to RAMS faculty during their scholarship
  • Additionally, scholars will receive a subscription to that contains current, concise summaries of the most up-to-date substance use research in the field

RAMS Program Timeline