The Communicating Across Difference (CAD) Research Study

Are you an undergrad researcher working with a near-peer (grad or postdoc) mentor?


Are you a near- peer mentoring an undergrad?

If so, we invite you to apply to participate in the Communicating Across Difference research study! This study is investigating what factors may influence the development of researchers’ communication skills, including the role of mentors in facilitating this process. This study is funded by the National Institute of General Medicine Sciences (U01 GM 132219) and approved by The University of Texas MD Anderson IRB (Protocol #2019-1010).



Raquel Ybañez Salinas, Bria Castellano, Princess Ekpo, Gordon Pherribo, Gabriela Fernández-Cuervo, Natalie Sirisaengtaksin, Wassim Chehab, Irene Rull Garcia, Jose Armando Fernandez Guerrero, and Andrea Hummel

Register to participate by January 31, 2023

Click here to register!

What is the Study About?

This study is investigating what factors may influence the development of researchers’ communication skills, including the role of mentors in facilitating this process.

Who Can Participate in the Study?

  • Undergrad researchers currently being mentored by a near-peer (PhD, postdoc, or instructor) or PhDs, postdocs, or instructors currently mentoring an undergrad researcher
  • Near-peer mentor currently mentoring an undergrad researcher


Please note that all information you provide will be kept confidential. You and the student that you are mentoring participate in parallel. Paired near-peer mentors and students will not see each other’s survey responses.

Participation in the study is entirely at your own discretion; you are not required to participate. Faculty mentors (PI’s) will not attend the workshops or have access to any surveys or data. Faculty mentors are aware of the research study but will not be informed whether you have decided to participate. While you should inform your faculty mentors about any absences from the work environment for workshop participation, you are otherwise discouraged from discussing your participation or non-participation in the study with supervisors.

Agreeing or declining to participate in this research study will not result in any adverse consequences to potential participants, including employees and students in the University of Texas system. Your participation is voluntary, and you may withdraw from this research study at any time without any penalty other than forfeiture of compensation. The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center IRB approved this project (Protocol #2019-1010). The project is funded by the NIH Common Fund (Administered by the NIGMS) through a U01 award (GM 132219).

How is this Study Designed?

  • Two engaging 2-hour workshops
  • Co-creation of a short video about your research project
  • Three surveys over ~9 months ($60 total compensation per participant)

When are the workshops?

Option 1 – Early Summer (for people starting research before June 13)

Workshop 1 (pick one):

  • Fri., June 24; 10AM-12PM CST
  • Mon., June 27; 2PM-4PM CST
  • Tues., June 28; 12PM-2PM CST

Workshop 2 (pick one):

  • Mon., July 18; 2PM-4PM CST
  • Tues., July 19; 10AM-12PM CST
  • Wed., July 20; 12PM-2PM CST


Option 2 – Late Summer (for people starting research on or after June 13) 

Workshop 1 (pick one):

  • Wed., July 6; 2PM-4PM CST
  • Thurs., July 7; 12PM-2PM CST
  • Fri., July 18; 11AM-1PM CST

Workshop 2 (pick one):

  • Thurs., July 28; 12PM-2PM CST
  • Fri., July 29; 11AM-1PM CST
  • Mon., Aug. 1; 2PM-4PM CST

What benefits will the study participant gain?

  • Boost your mentoring skills!
  • Get to know your mentor/mentee and yourself better
  • Address RCR criterion of mentor-mentee communication
  • Improve your science communication with the informal short video
  • Document mentor training on your CV

How do I apply?

Register here for the early dates by

June 17, 2022

Register here for the late dates by

June 29, 2022