Choose an Award by Career Stage

Choose an Award by Career Stage

NIAID funds training and career awards to develop and support the next generation of biomedical researchers—people just entering graduate school, finishing their doctorates, or coming in from other fields.

These awards enable promising scientists to gain education and experience. We award some grants to people, while others go to specific projects or educational institutions.

Table of Contents

Overview

NIAID funds grants for different career stages and types of research. We support awards for basic, clinical, and patient-oriented investigation, as well as awards for special populations at various career stages.

To help you decide which award best suits your needs, you may use the timelines below which show the grants that might be appropriate for where you are on the Ph.D. or M.D. (or equivalent) spectrum.

Support by Career Stage—Ph.D. Track

If you are pursuing or already have a Ph.D., use the two timelines below to find an appropriate award type and where (NIH or your academic institution) you would apply for the programs. For M.D.s, see Support by Career Stage—M.D. Track below instead.  

Career Timeline for Applying to NIH

Image: Timeline for Ph.D.s to apply to NIH. We summarize the graphic fully in the text below.
Credit: NIAID

Graduate students pursuing biomedical Ph.D. degrees can apply for an F30 (for dual degree pursuits, such as M.D./Ph.D. training) or F31 (including the Diversity F31, if eligible). After your Ph.D., as a postdoctoral fellow apply for an F32, K01, or K25. NIAID K01 awardees may be eligible for the Limited Competition: Small Research Grant Program for NIAID K01/K08/K23 Recipients (R03) to help start a research career. To ease your transition into a faculty position apply as a postdoctoral fellow to either the K22 or K99/R00.  

Career Timeline for Applying to Your Institution

Image: Timeline for Ph.D.s. to apply to your institution. We summarize the graphic fully in the text below.
Credit: NIAID

Your institution can use diversity supplements to support eligible high schoolers, college students, post-baccalaureates, graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and junior faculty. A T32 can support graduate students in Ph.D. programs or postdoctorates, and an R25 can be used to support graduate students (at the Ph.D. level), postdoctoral fellows, and early-stage faculty (within eight years of their first faculty appointment). 

Support by Career Stage—M.D. Track

If you are pursuing or already have an M.D., use the timelines below to find an appropriate award type and where (NIH or your academic institution) you would apply for the programs. For Ph.D.s, see Support by Career Stage—Ph.D. Track above instead.

Career Timeline for Applying to NIH

Image: Timeline for M.D.s to apply to NIH. We summarize the graphic fully in the text below.
Credit: NIAID

Medical students can apply for an F30 for combined M.D./Ph.D. training. They can also participate in T35 short-term research training or R25 training. In the clinical training phase of your M.D., apply for an F32. In the research training phase, you can apply to the Loan Repayment Program (LRP) or a K01, K08, K23, or K38 (limited eligibility). Toward the end of your research training, you can apply for a K22 or K99/R00 (either the parent K99/R00 or the NIAID Physician-Scientist K99/R00) to ease your transition into a faculty position. NIAID K01, K08 and K23 awardees may be eligible for the Limited Competition: Small Research Grant Program for NIAID K01/K08/K23 Recipients (R03) to help start a research career. Lastly, as a midcareer faculty member with independent grant funding such as an R01, you can apply for a K24.

Career Timeline for Applying to Your Institution

Image: Timeline for M.D.s to apply to your institution. We summarize the graphic fully in the text below.
Credit: NIAID

Your institution can use diversity supplements to support eligible high schoolers, college students, post-baccalaureates, graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and junior faculty. A T35 can support medical students. An R25 can support medical students, M.D.s in clinical training, and early-stage clinical faculty. An R38 can support medical residents who are then eligible to apply for their own career development support directly from NIH in the limited competition K38 program.  And a T32 can support M.D.s in their clinical training phase. 

Opportunity Descriptions

These brief descriptions may further help you in choosing a grant type.

Fellowship Grants Support Predoctoral Students

If you have a baccalaureate degree and are enrolled in a Ph.D. (or equivalent research degree) or a combined degree (e.g., Ph.D. and M.D.) program, you have three fellowship choices.

  1. NRSA Fellowship for Students at Institutions Without NIH-Funded Institutional Predoctoral Dual-Degree Training Programs (Parent F30) or the NRSA Fellowship for Students at Institutions With NIH-Funded Institutional Predoctoral Dual-Degree Training Programs (Parent F30)
    • You must be in a combined M.D. and Ph.D. and other dual doctoral degree training, for example, DVM and Ph.D., D.D.S. and Ph.D., Au.D. and Ph.D.
  2. NRSA Individual Predoctoral Fellowship (F31)
    • You must be at the dissertation research stage of training.
  3. NRSA Individual Predoctoral Fellowship to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (F31)
    • You must be a member of an underrepresented group, e.g., an underrepresented racial and ethnic group

Some NIH Institutes support other predoctoral grants. For other institutes, see the NIH NRSA site.

Postdoctoral Grants Fit Different Interests

If you recently earned a doctoral degree and are beginning your career as a junior researcher or faculty member, you qualify for several types of research support. Choose the award type that matches your area of interest.

  • To obtain training, apply for an NRSA Postdoctoral Fellowship (F32).
  • If your background is in quantitative science and engineering and you want to integrate this expertise with biomedicine, apply for a Mentored Quantitative Research Development Award (K25). To qualify, you'll need experience at the junior-faculty level, such as early- to mid-level assistant professor or research assistant professor.
  • To work in a clinical field, apply for a Mentored Clinical Scientist Research Career Development Award (K08).
  • To pursue an assistant professorship, apply for an NIAID Career Transition Award (K22) or NIH Pathway to Independence Award (K99/R00).
  • To conduct patient-oriented research, apply for a Mentored Patient-Oriented Research Career Development Award (K23).

Midcareer Grants Target More Experienced Investigators

If you're an established researcher, select an award type that supports your career goals.

  • To have protected time to devote to patient-oriented research, apply for a Midcareer Investigator Award in Patient-Oriented Research (K24).
  • If you oversee a research training program at a domestic, non-profit, private, or public educational institution, apply for an Institutional Research Training Grant (T32) for your program.
  • To provide short-term research training for students in health professional schools, apply for a Short-Term Institutional Research Training Grant (T35).

Have Questions?

If you have questions, contact
AITrainingHelpDesk@niaid.nih.gov.