Interested in Research Training Fellowships?


NIH has just reissued program announcements for Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) individual fellowships at the predoctoral (F31), postdoctoral (F32) and senior (F33) levels.

Scientist in her labIf you plan to apply, be sure to read the recent NIH Guide notice applying to NRSAs. Effective with the August 8, 2009, submission date, NIH will only accept electronic applications for F-series programs. There are other changes, too, including how letters of reference are submitted, how many amended applications you may submit (only one), and how review is structured (there are now five review criteria). In addition, reviewers will use the new scoring system for individual fellowships starting with applications reviewed at the summer 2009 study section meetings.

I am happy to answer your questions about the F32s and F33s, and Adolphus Toliver can answer questions about the diversity-oriented F31s.

As some of you may know, I recently became the acting research training director at NIGMS after John Norvell retired this past March. For more than 20 years, John provided outstanding leadership for training at NIGMS and across NIH, and he brought about many significant improvements.

I welcome your input on training matters and look forward to working with you in my new role.

2 Replies to “Interested in Research Training Fellowships?”

  1. Hi Alison,
    I’m trying to help a mid-career postdoc in my lab determine his eligibility for F33. Does F33 ‘still’ require 7 years of research experience beyond the doctorate degree? I noticed that in the new PA-10-111, this verbiage was deleted. The current eligibility section does not clearly state that the “7 subsequent years of relevant research or professional experience” must be post-PhD. Can you clarify? thanks.

  2. The purpose of the senior fellowship (F33) award is to provide support to experienced scientists who wish to make major changes in the direction of their research careers or who wish to broaden their scientific background by acquiring new research capabilities as independent investigators in research fields relevant to the missions of the participating NIH institutes and centers. The awards enable individuals with at least 7 years of research experience beyond the doctorate who have progressed to the stage of independent investigator to take time from their regular professional responsibilities for the purpose of receiving training to increase their scientific capabilities. These guidelines appear in the “Research Training Objectives” section of the current funding opportunity announcement (PA-10-111).

    So, a postdoctoral fellow would not be an eligible applicant for the F33. As an alternative, your postdoctoral fellow may want to investigate the Pathway to Independence Award (K99/R00). This award is for postdoctoral fellows who have less than 5 years of postdoctoral research training at the time of the initial application or resubmission.

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