OBJECTIVES: There is growing interest in engaging patients in healthcare research, which raises important questions about the factors that may promote such engagement. The purpose of this study was to examine the association between patient characteristics and three aspects of patient engagement in the medical research process: awareness, interest, and actual participation. METHODS: Cross-sectional, bivariate analyses were employed using the 2014 Health Information National Trends Survey. RESULTS: Analyses suggest modest levels of interest among respondents engaging as patient partners in the research process (37.7% of respondents), low level of awareness of what patient engagement in research was (15.3% of respondents), and a very low level of actual participation (2.7% of respondents). Respondents of higher socioeconomic status and with more positive patient attitudes regarding their health and healthcare were more likely to be interested in research. In comparison, relatively few patient characteristics were significantly associated with patient awareness and actual participation in research. CONCLUSION: Although it is promising that people are interested in being engaged in research, the results suggest that there is work to be done to raise awareness of these engagement opportunities. Likewise, the gap between awareness and participation highlights opportunities to identify why patients may be reluctant to participate even when they are aware of research opportunities.