The CDE training program is consistently ranked one of the top population science training programs in the country. Each year, CDE trains 45–50 predoctoral scholars from departments across the UW–Madison’s campus. Guided by the NICHD mission to ensure the health, productivity, independence, and well-being of all people, CDE’s demographic research provides trainees with foundational information about the health and well-being of individuals, families and groups, and the changing composition of the broader populations that they comprise.

The CDE training program is designed to foster an interdisciplinary community of junior scholars in population research, to build expertise in demographic theory and methods, and to cultivate students’ professional skills. The program provides trainees with a solid foundation in the core substantive and methodological aspects of demography, while new courses and research projects provide trainees with opportunities to develop expertise in cutting-edge research.

The training program has three components: (1) formal training through regular courses and mini-courses in an interdisciplinary environment, (2) exposure to cutting-edge research of scholars in the broader community of population studies, and (3) participation in substantive research projects, including mentored trainee-initiated research and participation in the research projects of CDE faculty.

CDE offers integrative methodological training through courses, seminars, and informal workshops. Because CDE is not a degree-granting program in demography, the Center crafts shared interdisciplinary training opportunities to supplement and complement the department-specific offerings. Students develop a core set of skills and enter an interdisciplinary community of scholars by taking classes required by all CDE trainees. The program also includes hands-on training from the Social Science Computing Cooperative (SSCC) in Stata, R, and Python as well as expert statistical consulting.

Support for CDE’s training program comes from a training grant (T32 HD007014-42) from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.