People new to health research or patient-centered research have many questions: What is patient-centered outcomes research? How does the research process work? How can I be an effective partner on a research study?

PCORI's on-demand training package, Research Fundamentals, answers those questions and more. It is designed to help you understand the language and logic of the research process in an engaging and easy-to-grasp way.

View Research Fundamentals

The training package’s advantages include:

  • Free, convenient access—PCORI offers the training at no charge, 24/7 via our website
  • Easy to understand—The training is written in plain language to make it clear and easy to remember
  • Modular format—The training is split into modules that take you through the research cycle from beginning to end
  • Set your own pace—You can complete each module one at a time or stop and start a lesson as your schedule allows
  • Mark your path—The Navigator tool allows you to personalize your learning journey

Research Fundamentals

The Navigator
This tool helps you explore the materials contained in the training and select the modules you want to complete.
The PCORI Approach to Patient-Centered Outcomes Research
This interactive PDF introduces you to patient-centered outcomes research and how it differs from traditional healthcare research.
Engaging in Stakeholder-Driven Research
A video-based module that features patients, clinicians, and members of the PCORI healthcare community describing engagement in stakeholder-driven research.
Module 1: Developing Research Questions
This module explains how studies are created through research questions, and the kinds of questions that patient-centered outcomes research tries to answer. It describes initial decisions that must be made when creating a study and provides a simple formula to remember each element.
Module 2: Designing the Research Study
This module introduces several common ways a team can design a study to compare two or more treatment options. It also explains how each design determines what information to gather, how to gather it, who to gather it from, and how that information is used to answer the research question.
Module 3: Planning Patient-Centered Consent and Study Protocols
This module focuses on an important aspect of collecting information from people in a research study: consent. It discusses informed consent and how research teams obtain it from people recruited for a study.
Module 4: Sampling, Recruiting, and Retaining Study Participants
This module explains how a research team decides the number of study participants. It also explains how a team chooses sample characteristics such as age, gender, or type of condition the people in the study should have or not have so that the findings are as useful as possible to all patients.
Module 5: Understanding and Sharing Research Findings
This module describes the ways stakeholders help the research team make sense of the collected information and determine findings. It also explores how a study’s findings can be used in different settings and how findings are shared so that they can inform healthcare choices.
PCORI's new on-demand training allows users to learn about the health research process and become involved in patient-centered outcomes research. Check it out here.

Promotional Toolkit

This online toolkit is for anyone new to health research or patient-centered research to learn more about Research Fundamentals and help spread the word about the on-demand training. View our sample newsletter, social media items, and ads/graphics library.

View Promotional Toolkit

Provide Feedback

PCORI values your thoughts and feedback about Research Fundamentals.

Provide Feedback

What's Happening at PCORI?

The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute sends weekly emails about opportunities to apply for funding, newly funded research studies and engagement projects, results of our funded research, webinars, and other new information posted on our site.

Subscribe to PCORI Emails


Hand pointing to email icon