The primary mission of the Biostatistics, Data and Computing Services Core in Psychiatry is to provide infrastructure to support research on mental disorders. Core faculty provide consulting on research design and feasibility, and staff offer direct support services for research projects including software for project management and implementation, data analysis, and other research services. Core faculty are experts in research methodology and biostatistics. The Core staff have expertise in database, web and applications programming for Windows, biostatistical analysis, research management, computer system administration and maintenance, and research regulatory matters including IRB and FDA.
The Core enhances opportunities for research funding and improves research quality both in design and execution by helping investigators design sound research projects, obtain independent funding, implement, manage and monitor study progress with software for data entry and reporting, analyze data correctly, and present it to colleagues and other consumers through publications in first-rank journals and conference presentations at the local, national and international level.
Grant development services such as design and statistical consultation, power analysis, and analyses of pilot data are available to department faculty without charge. Other consulting and data services are funded through a combination of departmental and grant support. Support from research grants is negotiated on an individual basis with Principal Investigators according to project needs. Research services to students and unfunded faculty members in the context of departmental career development are free.
Research support is the Core’s primary mission, but the BDCS Core mission is broader. Our expertise in programming and computing networking administration also supports both the department’s clinical amd educational missions and its administrative activities. For example, the department’s EMR was created by the BDCS Core and is maintained by our staff. Desktop computers throughout the department are kept running by our staff, and personal folders on shared departmental computers are created and maintained by the Core for Department members. Core staff are responsible for keeping department desktop and laptop computers up to date and functioning with respect to up-to-date software and UTHSCSA security requirements. Finally, the Core supports the Department’s educational mission with computer-based services such as streaming web-based teaching video and other computer-related services.