Individual Development Plan (IDP)
What is an IDP?
An individual development plan, also called postdoctoral mentoring plan, helps you:
- assess your skills, interests, and values;
- create a plan for achieving your academic and professional goals;
- communicate with your mentors about your evolving plan and needs.
Creating an IDP is a process through which you reflect, plan, and discuss, and ultimately achieve, your academic and professional goals. It is your responsibility to develop and maintain your IDP. You are encouraged to share your IDP with your mentors.
University of Arizona Postdoctoral IDP
UArizona Postdoctoral Affairs suggests using the following IDP. We encourage you to modify it according to your needs.
- What's next: Career Planning for Postdocs (Presentation by Karin Lawton-Dunn, Iowa State University)
- Beyond the Lab Cross Talk
- Informational Interview
There are other online resources to help you build an effective IDP:
- American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
- The National Postdoctoral Association offers suggestions for developing Mentoring Plans for Postdoctoral Scholars, a Core Competencies Toolkit, and a Core Competency Checklist.
- ImaginePhD is a free online career exploration and planning tool for PhD students and postdoctoral scholars in the humanities and social sciences. ImaginePhD is designed for users to assess their career-related skills, interests, and values, explore careers paths appropriate to their disciplines, create self-defined goals, and map out next steps for career and professional development success.
- Example of IDP from the University of Colorado Boulder.