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Award at a Glance

Award amount: $50,000

Application deadline: The letter of intent is due on April 15

Questions? Contact: Member Communities Department

Who can apply: APS members with a PhD, MD or equivalent degree and a postdoctoral research position at their institution. The applicant’s PI must also be an APS member.


Award Description

In our efforts to enhance the benefits of our early career members and to develop careers in physiological research worldwide, APS has coordinated the Postdoctoral Fellowship Program. The program will provide funding to five fellows for one year from October to September. Funds can be used for stipend and/or travel (restricted to APS sponsored conferences) not to exceed $50,000 USD total. No indirect costs allowed.

Timeline and Deadlines:

  • Letter of intent deadline: April 15 
  • Decisions on letter of intent to be notified: June 1
  • Full applications deadline: August 1 
  • Grantees to be notified: September 15 
  • Start date for funding: November 


Applications are open to all APS members worldwide.

Fellow applicants must:

  • Hold a PhD, MD or equivalent degree and a postdoctoral research position at their institution;
  • Applicant is eligible up to 3 years after obtaining terminal degree or completion of clinical training at the time of full application;
  • Be a current APS member; and
  • The program is limited to one application from the same mentor/sponsor within each program cycle.

The applicant’s mentor/sponsor must:

  • Have a minimum of three consecutive years of APS membership at the time of application;
  • Have past experience as a mentor/sponsor.;and
  • If assistant professor or equivalent, the application is required to include an established co-mentor/sponsor or a mentoring team of experienced investigators.

Criteria for Letter of Intent (LOI)

The program incorporates a two-phase application process. The first phase is the submission of a Letter of Intent.

Applicants must submit the following:

  1. Cover letter (one page limit) that includes brief description of the applicant’s career goals. The Cover letter should also include information about APS primary section for both mentor and applicant (if different – select one APS section for primary review of the application);
  2. One-page brief overview of project proposal including the overall goal/aim and very brief approach; and
  3. NIH-style biosketch format from applicant and mentor(s).

Peer-review to be conducted by the appropriate primary APS section awards committees as specified in the LOI.

The letters will be reviewed for:

  • eligibility in the program;
  • applicant’s potential for career in physiology research; and
  • project proposal.

Up to three applicants from each APS section will be invited to submit a full application.

Criteria for Full Applications

The second phase requires the applicant to be invited by their primary APS section to submit a full application with the following components (in addition to the LOI submitted for the first round).

Fellow applicants must submit:

  1. One-page description of applicant’s scholastic performance at the graduate level;
  2. One-page personal statement attesting to the applicant’s potential and desire to be a physiologist including career goals;
  3. Five-page scientific proposal including specific aims, significance, innovation; and research approach (NIH format i.e., Arial 11, 0.5 inches margins; bibliography is not counted towards page limit); and
  4. Two letters of recommendation from investigators with substantial knowledge of the applicant’s potential as a physiologist (not from mentor/sponsor).

Mentors/sponsors must submit the following:

  1. Funds available for completion of proposed studies;
  2. Research infrastructure and environment needed for the completion of proposed studies;
  3. Provide information about other trainees and research staff;
  4. Details on plans for rigor and reproducibility of research and completion of responsible conduct of research;
  5. Provide assurance that fellow will include an APS professional opportunity in their fellowship year;
  6. Assessment of fellow applicant’s potential as a physiologist; and
  7. Provide details of training activities to be conducted during the fellowship year.

Full application to be reviewed based on these criteria:

  1. Applicant’s potential;
  2. Merit of scientific proposal; and
  3. Training and career development plans (which includes assessment of mentor(s) and institutional environment).

The applicant’s potential is to be assessed from the applicant’s biosketch, applicant’s progress in academics and letters of reference.

The merit of the scientific proposal will be assessed with regards to:

  • significance;
  • innovation; and
  • research approach.

The career development of the applicant will be assessed from the applicant’s personal statement/career goals, mentor’s (co-mentors) biosketch and training experience as well as funds available for conducting research and training plan including potential APS professional development plans.

Full applications to be reviewed by APS Awards Committee. No revisions allowed from non-funded grants. There is no mandate that each APS section receives a grant awardee; fellowships will be awarded based on assessment of their merit and a maximum of two awardees/section will be allowed annually.


Professional Development/Training Opportunities

Applicant and mentor/sponsor must agree to a professional development component that will advance the applicant’s career by participation in one internship or professional development opportunity during the fellowship year. APS has many opportunities for postdoctoral fellow internships (less than 1 month or longer). These include policy advocacy, physiology in industry internship, teaching internship and others. APS staff and/or Career Opportunities in Physiology Committee (COPC) will provide information and consultation with applicants once they are awarded. It is expected that the applicant and mentor(s) will include a brief statement of the potential plan for the APS professional development in the training plan section of the application. However, the plan will be individualized for each applicant in consultation with the APS staff and COPC members once the awardees are selected.

Stipend Payments and Progress Report

Stipend payments will be made to the applicant’s institution. Institutions are expected to supplement stipends to match that of comparable level fellows according to seniority. A complete description of progress by the fellow and a letter from the advisor (or institutional representative) certifying that the fellow is making satisfactory progress will be required at the end of the fellowship year. A fellow may not accept private employment or another similar fellowship stipend simultaneously.

Applications are only accepted via online submission.