Fellowships

Pre-Doctoral Fellowships  Individual NRSA

General Information

F30 - Individual NRSA for MD-PhD or Other Dual-Doctoral Degree Students

F31 - Individual NRSA for Predoctoral Students

F31 - Individual NRSA for Diversity Predoctoral Students

F99/K00 - NIH Blueprint Diversity Specialized Predoctoral to Postdoctoral Advancement in Neuroscience (D-SPAN) Award

F32 - Individual NRSA for Late-Stage Predoctoral Students

Post-Doctoral Fellowships – Individual NRSA

F32 - Individual NRSA for Post-Doctoral Fellows

 


Pre-Doctoral Fellowships - Individual NRSA

General Information

NRSA Stipends, Tuition/Fees and Other Budgetary Levels Effective for Fiscal Year 2017 (NOT-OD-17-084)

Citizenship Requirement: At the time of award the individual must be a citizen or a non-citizen national of the United States or have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence.


F30 - Individual NRSA for MD-PhD or Other Dual-Doctoral Degree Students

Starting with the August 8, 2016 receipt date, NINDS will use the F30 NRSA mechanism PA-16-306 ONLY to support students at institutions without formal NIH-funded institutional predoctoral dual-degree training programs.  Students at institutions with formal NIH-funded predoctoral dual-degree training programs may apply for F31 NRSA funding PA-16-309, which supports graduate education only. 

For the F30 mechanism. NINDS will provide funding to applicants who are within 8 years of starting their entire MD/PhD training – funded awards will not extend beyond the 8th year in the MD/PhD program. NINDS holds strictly to the eligibility requirements described in the F30 FOA. Applicants must be within the first 48 months of their entire dual degree program to submit an initial (A0) application. A minimum of 50% of F30 funding must support research training leading to the research doctorate (during this time, 100% of full time effort to research training is expected, with a maximum of ½ day per week allowed for clinical training experiences).

Should the awardee’s timeline change following submission of an F30 application, the award will be adjusted as needed to maintain the requirement that a minimum of 50% of the support be used toward research training (at 100% full time effort). Applicants are expected to contact NINDS if there is a change in plans either before or after the award is made. For awards to be made, applications must clearly indicate the timeline of the entire dual degree program, and the portion of that program for which the award is requested.

Applicants are encouraged to contact Stephen J. Korn, Ph.D. before preparing an application, as NINDS will consider only those applications that are designed to support the training and development of scientists with interests relevant to the mission of NINDS.

Program Contact:
Stephen J. Korn, Ph.D.
Director, Office of Training and Workforce Development
301-496-4188; Fax 301-480-1080
korns@ninds.nih.gov


 

F31 - Individual NRSA for Predoctoral Students

NINDS provides National Research Service Award (NRSA) predoctoral training fellowships (F31) to promising applicants with the potential to become productive, independent investigators in the scientific mission areas of the Institute. NINDS uses this mechanism to support the career development of neuroscientists (some rare exceptions apply), so the applicant must propose dissertation research in an area within the scientific mission of the NINDS and a training program appropriate for a career in neuroscience research. The mentor should be committed to the successful transition of the applicant to a subsequent appropriate position, have a strong track record in training, and have an active, funded research program in the area of the applicant's proposed research. Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to contact the NINDS Training Office before preparation of an application to determine whether their proposed training and research falls within the NINDS mission. 

NINDS uses F31 to support both PhD students and MD/PhD students who are at MSTP institutions. 

PhD Students. This program will provide predoctoral training support for doctoral candidates who are within their first 6 years of graduate school, have or will have successfully completed their comprehensive examinations or the equivalent by the time of award, and will be performing dissertation research and training. Support will be provided for a maximum of 3 years and a minimum of 12 months. The applicant should provide evidence of potential for a productive research career based upon the quality of previous research training and academic record. The research training program should be carried out in a research environment that includes appropriate human and technical resources and is demonstrably committed to the research training of the applicant in the program he/she proposes in the application.

MD/PhD Students. NINDS will provide funding to applicants who are within 8 years of starting their entire MD/PhD and within 6 years of starting their research training towards the PhD degree - funded awards will not extend beyond these training periods. 100% of full time effort must be devoted to research training. However, approximately ½ day per week may be devoted to continued clinical education. 

For all Fellowship mechanisms. Whereas it is expected that the applicant will work with the mentor to develop the application, the applicant should write an original research plan consistent with the mentor’s funded researchApplicants should not simply be working towards fulfillment of specific aims already devised by the mentor. In addition, applicants are strongly advised not to write in the second person, or to refer to themselves in the third person. It is critical that NINDS and reviewers understand what the applicant is doing, what the applicant is proposing, what the applicant him/herself has written, and what has or will be done by others in the research environment.

Program Contact:

Stephen J. Korn, Ph.D.
Director, Office of Training and Workforce Development
301-496-4188; Fax 301-480-1080
korns@ninds.nih.gov


F31 - Individual NRSA for Diversity Predoctoral Students

NINDS provides National Research Service Award (NRSA) training fellowships to outstanding predoctoral candidates from groups that have been shown to be underrepresented, including underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, individuals with disabilities, and individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds.  The intent of this program is to increase the number of scientists from underrepresented populations in biomedical research.  Award recipients will receive up to five years of research training leading to a PhD. or equivalent research degree, a combined MD-PhD. degree, or another formally combined professional and research doctoral degree in biomedical, behavioral, health services, or clinical sciences who are within their first 6 years of graduate school. Support is NOT available for individuals enrolled in medical or other professional schools UNLESS they are enrolled in a combined professional doctorate/PhD degree program in biomedical or behavioral research. Potential applicants are encouraged to contact Dr. Michelle Jones-London, Chief, Office of Programs to Enhance Neuroscience Workforce Diversity (OPEN-WD), at jonesmiche@ninds.nih.gov for additional information.

Applicants are required to submit a letter with the application certifying eligibility of the Fellowship Applicant for this program. This letter must be received by the NIH by the application due date, or the application will be considered incomplete and not reviewed. Specifically, information must be submitted by the applicant Institution in a letter certifying that the applicant belongs to one of the following groups as further defined in PA-16-308 (see section on Eligible Individuals): (A) An individual from racial and ethnic groups that have been shown by the National Science Foundation to be underrepresented in health-related sciences on a national basis; or (B) An individual with disabilities, who are defined as those with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities. The certification letter (titled: Diversity_Eligibility_Ltr) must be attached under Item 12 “Other Attachments” in the Section titled “Other Project Information Form.”  The letter must be on institutional letterhead and scanned so that an institutional official signature is visible. 

  • See NIH Program Announcement: PA-16-308
  • NRSA FY2017 Stipend levels: NOT-OD-17-084
  • Application Form SF 424
  • Application Receipt Dates: April 8, August 8, and December 8
  • Change to Standard Due Dates for Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award Individual Predoctoral Fellowships to Promote Diversity in Health Related Research (F31 - Diversity) (NOT-OD-17-029)

F99/K00 - NIH Blueprint Diversity Specialized Predoctoral to Postdoctoral Advancement in Neuroscience (D-SPAN) Award

The purpose of the NIH Blueprint Diversity Specialized Predoctoral to Postdoctoral Advancement in Neuroscience (D-SPAN) Award is to support a defined pathway across career stages for outstanding graduate students who are from diverse backgrounds underrepresented in neuroscience research. This two-phase award will facilitate completion of the doctoral dissertation and transition of talented graduate students to strong neuroscience research postdoctoral positions, and will provide career development opportunities relevant to their long-term career goal of becoming independent neuroscience researchers. For the F99/K00 award, individuals may receive up to 6 years combined support for both phases, which includes up to 2 years in the F99 fellowship phase and up to 4 years in the K00 career development phase.

Applicants are encouraged, but not required, to submit a Letter of Intent to Dr. Michelle Jones-London. See Program Announcement for details. The due date for the Letter of Intent is 30 days prior to the application due date.


Post-Doctoral Fellowships – Individual NRSA

F32 - Individual NRSA for Post-Doctoral Fellows

Individual National Research Service Awards (F32) are made to applicants seeking postdoctoral research training in the basic or clinical neurological sciences. The proposed F32 research must fall within the NINDS mission.  NINDS will not accept applications that fall within the mission of other institutes.  Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact NINDS prior to applying to confirm the mission relevance of the proposed F32 project. (Mission-relevance is determined by the specific aims and significance of the research and specific NIH referral guidelines. Mission-relevance is not determined by sources of mentor funding or simply a relevance of the research to topics that are within the NINDS mission).

The NINDS F32 is different from the NIH-wide F32. The key differences are outlined below.

  • Eligibility:  Applicants are eligible to apply within approximately one year prior to joining a postdoctoral laboratory to within the first 12 months of starting in that laboratory. F32 applications will not be considered for funding if the candidate has been in the postdoctoral lab or research environment longer than 12 months at the time of the application receipt date. The eligibility window applies for both new and resubmission applications.
  • Duration of Support:  The NINDS F32 can be used to support postdoctoral fellows for the first 3 years in a given postdoctoral laboratory or research environment. So, for example, if applicants wait until late in their first postdoctoral experience to apply, and receive the award 6 months into their 2nd postdoctoral year, they will be eligible for up to 18 months of support.  Note:  Support may be requested for a first or second mentored postdoctoral position, but a second position will only be supported if the laboratory, research environment and mentor(s) are completely different from the applicant’s first postdoctoral experience.
  • Preliminary data are discouraged-in order to encourage earlier submissions, the inclusion of preliminary data is discouraged.  Applicants will neither benefit nor be penalized if preliminary data are included (see discussion and exceptions to this above).
  • Candidates should carefully read all descriptions, instructions and review criteria in the FOA for an understanding of how the applications will be evaluated.
  • NINDS F32 applications will be reviewed by the NINDS Scientific Review Branch

See description and FAQs on Applying for the NINDS F32

Don’t wait to apply!

The first round of NINDS F32 applications has been reviewed, and the first awards have been made.  For this round, NINDS funded 22% of the applications that were reviewed. The histogram below shows that (as hoped) the reviewers did not consider the time spent in postdoc when evaluating the merit of the application. Applicants early in their postdocs were as likely to receive fundable scores as applicants late in their postdocs. In this first round, we received (as expected) few applications (<0.5%) from those who had not yet started their postdocs. The take-home message here is that you don’t need to wait until you’ve spent a year in your postdoc lab to submit a competitive application.  Candidates who apply early in the eligibility window are as likely to get funded as those who apply later on.

As stated in the FOA and on our website, our hope is that most F32s will be submitted before starting, or very shortly after starting, the postdoctoral position. And remember, reviewers are instructed not to attach any value to preliminary data (see Applying to the NINDS F32 for details and potential exceptions).   

                                                        NINDS F32 Funded Applications

  • See NIH Program Announcement: PAR-16-458
  • Application Form SF 424
  • Application Receipt Dates:  April 8, August 8 and December 8
  • Notice to Discontinue the Requirement for Additional Educational Information under PA-14-149 "Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Individual Postdoctoral Fellowship (Parent F32)" (NOT-OD-14-137) Office of the Director, NIH

Program Contact:
Stephen J. Korn, Ph.D.
Director, Office of Training and Workforce Development
301-496-4188; Fax 301-480-1080
korns@ninds.nih.gov
 

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