Enhance and innovate the way you do research

Digital Scholar Program

The use of digital practices and approaches can potentially increase the quality and efficiency of all phases of the traditional clinical translational research process. This program helps research professionals and students who are involved in the health sciences to develop competency in digital research practices and approaches. The events and training resources introduce health researchers at USC, CHLA and beyond to the benefits and limitations of digital practices and approaches that address specific research needs.

We are currently undertaking a qualitative study to describe key stakeholders’ perspectives on the need to: (A) formalize training in digital practices and approaches among clinical translational research trainees; and (B) develop an aligned educational framework that defines core competencies, educational methods, and evaluation metrics.

Please send any questions about this program or suggestions to

Find recordings of past Digital Scholar Webinars HERE.

Danieli B. Salinas, MD, MS - Assistant Professor of Pediatrics and Preventive Medicine, USC

View more voices from our Trainees

Digital Scholar Program Resources

Digital Scholar Webinar: Digital Tools for Scaled-Up Qualitative Research

Explore the rationale behind this approach and witness its practical application through empirical examples.

Tagged: research , qualitative research

Research Ethics Foum: Research Ethics Consultation

Gain valuable insights from a national survey, learn about implementing REC services, and delve into the Consultation Service at the National Institutes of Health.

Tagged: research ethics , research methodology , research , ethics

Digital Scholar Webinar: Getting Started with Dedoose for Qualitative and Mixed Methods Research

This 60-minute webinar will give you an orientation to Dedoose, a qualitative and mixed methods data analysis application. Join Dedoose's Director of Academic Engagement, Dr. Sara Grummert, as she walks you through Dedoose and its collaborative functionality.


Digital Scholar Webinar: Effective Research Writing - Getting Started and Tips for Successful Collaborations

During this 60-minute webinar, we feature a panel of six productive scholars, ranging from graduate students to professors, who offer tips and strategies for effective research writing.

Tagged: collaboration , medical writing

Career Development Seminar Series: Academic Industry Clinical Collaboration - Best Practices

​This 60-minute session uses real-life examples of best practices for Academic-Pharma/Biotech collaboration. We will illustrate examples from both Large Pharma and Biotech Start-up companies.


Career Development Seminar Series: NIH Loan Repayment Programs: The Why and the How

This 60-minute session covers the process of applying for an NIH Loan Repayment Award in a brief didactic. A panel of recent award recipients from Keck and CHLA with then discuss their experiences applying.


Digital Scholar Webinar: Finding and Accessing Publicly Available Datasets

During this 60-minute webinar we will talk about resources for searching for publicly available datasets, and the process for registering and accessing government data using the National Survey on Drug Use and Health as a model.

Tagged: data management , data collection and analysis

Digital Scholar Webinar: Social and Environmental Determinants of Health (SEDoH) in Clinical Informatics

This 60-minute session informs attendees how social and environmental factors act as determinants of patients’ health.

Tagged: informatics , clinical research informatics

Digital Scholar Webinar: Best Practices for Establishing an Effective Online Presence

Learn strategies for promoting your research, publications, conference talks and other efforts.

Tagged: social media/internet research , online profile building

Digital Scholar Webinar: Word Frequencies Reveal Racial Differences in Clinical Documentation, But Not Their Causes

Half The Picture: Word Frequencies Reveal Racial Differences in Clinical Documentation, But Not Their Causes

Tagged: clinical research , disparities in research , research , race

Digital Scholar Webinar: Effectively Utilizing Video in Research

Effectively utilizing video can be a challenge as you attempt to communicate specific ideas to your intended audience. This 60-minute webinar explores how video can elevate the presentation of your findings.

Tagged: dissemination of science , technology , clinical research , research

Digital Scholar Webinar: Giving Back: Strategies for Effectively Communicating Results Back to Research Participants

Digital Scholar Webinar: Giving Back: Strategies for Effectively Communicating Results Back to Research Participants

Tagged: community engagement , research participant recruitment , research

Digital Scholar Webinar: Social Media as a Platform for Health Behavior Change

Social media as a platform for health behavior change: lessons learned from the CAN Quit (Connecting Alaska Native People to Quit Smoking) study

Tagged: scientific communication , social media/internet research , reputation management

Digital Scholar Webinar: Registration and Reporting Requirements

This 60-minute webinar covers the basic requirements for registration and results reporting requirements in

Tagged: research

Digital Scholar Webinar: Recruiting Research Participants Online Using Reddit

​This 50-minute presentation introduces r/SampleSize, a community on the website Reddit that allows for online participant recruitment without compulsory or immediate payment. It will provide an overview of best practices for recruiting participants on r/SampleSize. It will also compare r/SampleSize to Amazon Mechanical Turk (MTurk), a widely used crowdsourcing platform for recruiting research participants.

Tagged: research participant recruitment , clinical trial recruitment

Digital Scholar Webinar: Open Reproducible Research – Challenges and Opportunities

This presentation introduces basic concepts and issues around reproducibility. It will then provide an overview of existing tools that help researchers publish open reproducible research and which aspects users should consider when selecting the right tool for the own work.

Tagged: research methodology , research

Digital Scholar Webinar: Getting to Outcomes: Supporting Implementation of Evidence-Based Programs

This presentation will summarize the Getting to Outcomes approach and its research. In addition, the presentation will show how digital tools have been used to support community organizations.

Tagged: clinical evidence

Digital Scholar Webinar: Breaking Down (Brick) Walls: Switching to Remote, Virtual, & Decentralized Clinical Trials

In this 60-minute webinar, Dr. Tenaerts presents the work of the Clinical Trials Transformation Initiative (CTTI) and discusses two main topics regarding digital clinical trials: (1) moving ongoing trials to remote and (2) planning for decentralized trials.

Tagged: clinical trials , clinical trial design

Digital Scholar Webinar: Transparent, Open, and Reproducible Research

This webinar will introduce open science to a clinical and translational research audience. It will begin by introducing the opportunities and challenges motivating the wider open science movement, such as accelerating scientific discovery, broadening access to scientific knowledge, and irreproducibility. It will then provide an overview of core open science practices for health researchers to adopt. Lastly, it will overview actions other key stakeholders in the scientific ecosystem can take to support open science.

Tagged: research

Digital Scholar Webinar: Online Teaching Practices Buffet: Tools, Strategies, and Materials for a More Inclusive Online Class

In this webinar, you will learn to identify at least one new strategy applicable to online teaching, plan at least one course update to make your online course more inclusive and access customizable recommended materials for course inclusivity.

Tagged: career development , technology , academia

Developing a professional social media presence on Twitter –Tips and strategies for researchers and academics

Overview: When used to support and promote professional activities, social media can be a powerful tool for faculty, researchers, and clinicians. Platforms like Twitter make it easy and convenient to disseminate research, expand professional networks, and interact with new audiences. Given all the potential benefits, it is important to develop an intentional social media strategy that will enhance one’s career. This webinar provides social media guidance for researchers and academics who are looking to build a professional, digital presence. Social media case studies, step-by-step instructions for conducting a “digital audit” and recommended tips for social media use are presented. Speaker: Sarah Mojarad, MS, is a lecturer at the University of Southern California (USC) where she holds a faculty appointment in Viterbi School of Engineering. Prior to joining USC, she co-created and co-taught the course “Social Media for Scientists” at Caltech. In addition to teaching an updated version of this course at USC, Sarah has been piloting a new medical student curricular program on online professionalism the last two years. Last spring, she also co-created and co-taught a new course on career development for physician scientist students. Sarah has given keynote talks, lectures, and workshops around the world. She has presented her work to the National Science Board of the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Department of State, and the National Cancer Institute. Her areas of expertise are in social media, science communication, and online medical professionalism. She received her BA in Psychology from Boston University and MS in Corporate and Organization Communication from Northeastern University.

Tagged: social media/internet research

Recruiting Participants Online for Survey and Intervention Research

Overview: This webinar will describe lessons learned from a series of studies that used social media websites to recruit U.S. veterans into two survey research efforts and a randomized controlled trial addressing heavy alcohol use. As an increasing number of research studies are moving online, the methods described to reach this typically difficult-to-engage group using the Internet alone can be applied to a number of other populations and research designs. Speaker: Eric R. Pedersen, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, University of Southern California Dr. Pedersen is an Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences in the Keck School of Medicine at USC. He is an adjunct behavioral scientist at the RAND Corporation. He is also the Director of Digital Mental Health and he is the Director of Digital Health within the SC CTSI. His research interests are primarily in the areas of young adult/adolescent alcohol use and co-occurring mental health disorders.

Tagged: social media/internet research , collaboration

Disseminating Scientific Papers via Twitter: Practical Insights and Research Evidence

The course provides an overview of Altmetrics research and present the challenges – including methods and first results – of classifying Twitter user groups, with a particular focus on identifying members of the general public and measuring societal impact. The course will provide hands-on exercises and instructions on how to analyze by whom, when, and how scientific papers are shared on Twitter.

Tagged: dissemination of science , networking

What We Can Learn About Successful Citizen Science from Microbiome Research

Citizen Science typically refers to research collaborations between scientists and volunteers, particularly (but not exclusively) to expand opportunities for scientific data collection and to provide access to scientific information for community members. Dr. Knight will discuss the American Gut Project ( that was launched in November 2012 to discover the kinds of microbes and microbiomes “in the wild” via a self-selected citizen-scientist cohort. The result is a database that characterizes the diversity of the industrialized human gut microbiome on an unprecedented scale; reveals novel relationships with health, lifestyle, and dietary factors; and establishes a living platform for research discovery.

Tagged: research participant recruitment , project management , clinical trials

How to Get Indexed in International Citation Databases

Citations—often termed as intellectual transactions, acknowledgment of intellectual debts, and conceptual association—are a link between the author’s current study and already published work. It not only provides credibility to the author’s work but also helps funders evaluate the impact of the research study.

Tagged: dissemination of science , research impact measurement

Effective Use of Academic and Social Media Networks for Endorsing your Publication

This webinar will give a detailed overview of the recommended strategies for effective research promotion on academic and social media platforms and optimizing visibility of the published articles.

Tagged: scientific communication

MedEdPORTAL, a Peer-Reviewed Journal and Online Resource for Teaching and Learning Resources

This webinar will introduce a MEDLINE-indexed, open-access journal that allows researchers to leverage existing digital educational materials from other institutions and to get scholarly credit for those materials they share.

Tagged: scientific communication , dissemination of science , collaboration

A method to develop a comic based on your research: From scientists, for scientists, and beyond.

This webinar will describe a simple, flexible framework for translating a complex scientific publication into a broadly accessible comic format.

Tagged: scientific communication , dissemination of science

Digital strategies to find the right journal for publishing your research

This webinar will provide an overview of digital tools and initiatives that help researchers select the right journal for their manuscript to ensure the best chance of article acceptance.

Tagged: scientific communication , dissemination of science

Social Media and the 21st-Century Scholar: How Researchers Can Harness Social Media to Amplify Their Career

This webinar will highlight successful case studies that show how scientists and scholars might use social media to enhance their careers and outline five key steps scientists can follow to build and manage your scholarly presence online.

Tagged: scientific communication , dissemination of science , networking , online profile building

How Researchers Can Get Science Done Faster Using an R&D Services Marketplace

Watch this webinar to learn how the Science Exchange R&D Services Marketplace can empower researchers to outsource experiments and attract collaborators. Success stories will show how scientists in diverse research areas have used Science Exchange to save time and gain early access to innovation.

Tagged: networking , collaboration

Creating an Effective Study Recruitment Webpage

This webinar will provide practical guidance on using the USC Clinical Studies Directory publishing tool to create a study webpage and on developing effective content so that your study can be found and read.

Tagged: scientific communication , research participant recruitment

21st Century Tools for Sharing Your Science: Video Abstracts and Podcasts, Two Practical Examples and Success Stories

This webinar will highlight two initiatives designed to help scientists disseminate their research: (1) We Share Science, an online platform for science videos (video abstracts), and (2) Parsing Science podcast, the stories behind the science, as told by the researchers themselves.

Tagged: scientific communication , dissemination of science

Crowdsourcing applied to knowledge management in translational research: the Gene Wiki and Mark2Cure

This webinar will cover how crowdsourcing has been successfully used to tackle a number of research projects that require massive human effort. Andrew Su, PhD, will provide a general overview of this field and share practical insights from two case studies.

Tagged: collaboration

Utilization of Twitter by early career women in academic medicine and science: Suggestions for developing a Twitter network

This webinar will highlight different ways of using Twitter for professional development to obtain the support women in academic medicine and science are otherwise lacking.

Tagged: scientific communication , dissemination of science , networking , collaboration

Introducing Figshare, a Free Repository where Researchers Can Make all of Their Research Outputs Available in a Citable, Shareable and Discoverable Manner

This webinar will (1) introduce the platform, (2) showcase examples of successful data sharing and its impact, and (3) explain how to best use it for sharing knowledge more quickly and effectively, and for building an online research profile.

Tagged: scientific communication , dissemination of science , collaboration , online profile building

Leveraging Medical Health Record Data for Identifying Research Study Participants: Practical Guidance on Using Clinical Research Informatics Applications in Your Research

This webinar will highlight three applications available at USC, CHLA and LA County DHS that assist researchers with identifying prospective study participants.

Tagged: research participant recruitment , clinical research informatics

Research Data Sharing and Re-Use: Practical Implications for Data Citation Practice that Benefit Researchers

This webinar will highlight the findings of a recent study on the characteristics of data sharing, reuse, and citation, and it will provide practical recommendations for formalized citation practices that benefit the researchers who decide to do so.

Tagged: scientific communication , dissemination of science , online profile building

Disseminating scientific research via Twitter: Practical insights and research evidence

This webinar will provide an overview of using Twitter to reach peers and non-specialist groups, the relationship between tweets and citations, and provide tips for building an academic Twitter presence.

Tagged: scientific communication , dissemination of science , online profile building

Using alternative scholarly metrics to showcase the impact of your research: An introduction for researchers

Scholarship is increasingly being created, disseminated, and measured on digital and social platforms. If Twitter exchanges, Facebook “saves,” and YouTube hits are the new metrics for tracking scholarship, how are we measuring societal and educational impact and outreach? How can researchers display their research impact using social media on promotion and tenure dossiers? This webinar will discuss altmetrics, alternative scholarly metrics that measure the impact and use of scholarship.

Tagged: scientific communication , dissemination of science , research impact measurement

Using electronic Laboratory Notebooks in the academic life sciences: a group leader's experience on how they can make research teams more efficient

Digital technologies are shaping the way experiments are performed, results captured, and findings disseminated. We will explore what electronic Laboratory Notebooks (eLNs) afford biomedical researchers, what they require, and how one should go about implementing such a tool.

Tagged: project management , team management

Accelerating systematic review studies using the online tool Covidence

Literature reviews, in particular systematic reviews, are invaluable to represent the latest and most complete information available on a particular topic or intervention, but they can be time consuming. This webinar explores a digital application called Covidence that is designed to accelerate the systematic review process.

Tagged: literature evaluation and synthesis , scientific literature search

Using the research platform TurkPrime to crowdsource data for the health sciences

Crowdsourcing platforms are revolutionizing research by providing a way to collect clinical and behavioral data with unprecedented speed and efficiency. This seminar explores another digital platform called TurkPrime that is designed to support research participant recruitment.

Tagged: research participant recruitment

Recruiting study participants online using Amazon's Mechanical Turk

Crowdsourcing has had a dramatic impact on the speed and scale at which scientific research can be conducted. This webinar summarizes what is known about MTurk sample composition and data quality with an emphasis on findings relevant to clinical psychological research. It then addresses methodological issues with using MTurk--many of which are common to other nonprobability samples but unfamiliar to clinical science researchers--and suggests concrete steps to avoid these issues or minimize their impact.

Tagged: research participant recruitment

Creating Compelling Infographics

In this workshop, you will learn how to create compelling infographics that help you better articulate your key findings using a data-driven approach.

Tagged: scientific communication , dissemination of science

Using Social Media Data to Gain Insights into Community Trends

In this workshop, you will learn how to use social media data (social media listening) to gain insights into emerging community needs, trends, and conversations.

Tagged: social media/internet research

Utilize Digital and Social Media Data for Your Research

Today, over 80 percent of Americans seek health information online and nearly 70 percent of all Internet users in the United States use digital and social media. These numbers are increasing, even among diverse and underserved populations. This trend provides huge opportunities for researchers.

Tagged: social media/internet research

Accelerate the Dissemination and Impact of Your Research Findings

In this workshop, you will learn how to use web-based approaches and social media to accelerate the dissemination and impact of your research findings.

Tagged: scientific communication , dissemination of science

Leverage Science Crowdfunding

In this workshop, you will learn how to leverage crowdfunding to obtain seed funding. Science crowdfunding is an alternative approach that couples storytelling, fundraising, outreach and networking. Scientists in academia and the private sector have already successfully used it to supplement and substitute grants.

Tagged: funding

Introduction to Becoming a Successful Digital Scholar

In this workshop, we will provide an overview of Digital Scholarship and explore examples of scholars who have successfully used digital approaches to advance their research and careers.

Tagged: scientific communication , research participant recruitment , dissemination of science , networking , collaboration , online profile building , reputation management


NIH Funding Acknowledgment: Important - All publications resulting from the utilization of SC CTSI resources are required to credit the SC CTSI grant by including the NIH funding acknowledgment and must comply with the NIH Public Access Policy.