decorative image
Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.
decorative image
Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you've safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

n/a Warning! This browser is not supported - Some features might not work. Try using a different browser such as Chrome, Edge, Firefox, or Safari.


Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards (NRSA)
for Individual Postdoctoral Fellows (F32)

Purpose of the Award

  • Provides support to promising postdoctoral applicants who have the potential to become productive and successful independent research investigators
  • Offers an opportunity to enhance the applicant's understanding of the health-related sciences, within the broad scope of biomedical, behavioral, or clinical research or other specific disciplines relevant to the research mission of the participating NIH Institutes and Centers
  • Applicants with a health professional doctoral degree may use the proposed postdoctoral training to satisfy a portion of the degree requirements for a master's degree, a research doctoral degree or any other advanced research degree program.
  • Requires that the Nation’s overall needs for biomedical research personnel be taken into account by giving special consideration to physicians and other health professionals who propose to become active biomedical researchers and who agree to undertake a minimum of 2 years of biomedical, behavioral or clinical research


  • Must have received a PhD, MD, DO, DC, DDS, DVM, OD, DPM, ScD, EngD, Dr PH, DNSc, ND (Doctor of Naturopathy), PharmD, DSW, PsyD, or equivalent doctoral degree from an accredited domestic or foreign institution
  • Must not be engaging in studies leading to the MD, DO, DDS, DVM, or other similar health professional degrees, or the clinical years of residency training.
  • May be engaging in the research fellowship years of a research-track residency program
  • Research clinicians must devote full-time to their proposed research training and confine clinical duties to those activitiesthat are part of the research training program
  • Individuals may receive up to three years of aggregated Kirschstein-NRSA support at the postdoctoral level, including any combination of support from an institutional training grant (e.g., T32 or T90) and an individual fellowship award (F32)
  • The application should not be a reiteration of the sponsor’s research program but rather should demonstrate the candidate’s contribution to the originality of the project idea, approach and/or hypotheses, as appropriate for their career stage
  • There are no specific requirements for who should serve as an applicant’s referees, including a primary mentor or predoctoral advisor. There are many legitimate reasons why a postdoctoral grant applicant would choose not to include a letter of reference from their predoctoral thesis advisor. The absence of a letter from a predoctoral thesis advisor or another previous mentor should not affect the score.
  • Each full-time predoctoral or postdoctoral NRSA fellow is eligible to receive $2,500 per budget period for childcare costs provided by a licensed childcare provider. Childcare costs are permitted for dependent children living in the eligible fellow’s home ages 12 and below, or children who are disabled and under age 18.  Please see NOT-OD-21-074 for additional information.

More Information