What is a Postdoctoral Mentoring Plan or Individual Development Plan?
A postdoctoral mentoring plan or individual development plan (IDP) is a key tool in establishing expectations and opening a line of communication for postdoctoral scholars and supervisors to discuss professional development objectives and career goals. A postdoctoral mentoring plan or IDP is a required and important component of many grant applications. Below are resources to help you build a competitive plan and to ensure your postdoctoral scholar has a positive and productive experience at the University of Arizona.
University of Arizona Resources
The University of Arizona Research Development Services offers resources for creating a Postdoctoral Mentoring Plan (National Science Foundation) or Individual Development Plan (National Institutes of Health).
- For examples of Postdoctoral Mentoring and Individual Development Plans, please contact Research Development Services at firstname.lastname@example.org
National Postdoctoral Association Resources
The University of Arizona is a member of the National Postdoctoral Association. All faculty at the University of Arizona are eligible to create a login as an ‘Individual Affiliate Member’ to gain access to the many resources available including:
- A Mentoring Plans for Postdoctoral Scholars Toolkit
- A Core Competencies Toolkit to help you build a postdoctoral scholars training program including a Core Competency Checklist
In addition to those listed above, there are many online resources with guidelines and templates to help you build an effective IDP:
- The American Association for the Advancement of Science provides a free interactive-career-planning and development tool called myIDP.
- The Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) provides basic guidelines for postdoctoral scholars and mentors to develop an individual development plan.
- The Committee on Science, Engineering, and Public Policy has provided recommendations on enhancing the postdoctoral experience relevant to mentoring and individual development plans (National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. Enhancing the Postdoctoral Experience for Scientists and Engineers: A Guide for Postdoctoral Scholars, Advisers, Institutions, Funding Organizations, and Disciplinary Societies. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2000.)