5.2 Definitions and Classification

(Amended 11/5/21)
  1. Postdoctoral scholars at The University of Iowa are recognized as persons engaged primarily in research, as part of a continuum of post-Baccalaureate education and training, unique from either students or faculty members. The individual's classification, responsibilities, and benefits have been tailored to this unique status. As a postdoctoral scholar or fellow at The University of Iowa, they have access to some of the opportunities and services available to students and some of the benefits provided to faculty.

    "Postdoctoral scholar" and "postdoctoral fellow" are terms used at The University of Iowa to designate temporary, doctoral-level researchers engaged in advanced education and training designed to prepare for an academic and/or research career. The University recognizes two classifications of postdoctoral appointees, depending on the sources of their stipend and research funding, and the nature of their research activities.
    1. Postdoctoral scholars are engaged in research supported by external grants or contracts or by University of Iowa General Education funds that may be made available to faculty members. This type of appointment is used for those not on a National Institutes of Health (NIH) National Research Service Award (NRSA) grant. Individuals  appointed under this classification (appointment code FP01) have specific responsibilities and research expectations directly related to the grant, contract, or University-funded program.
    2. Postdoctoral fellows are supported by NIH NRSA grants. The primary obligation to accomplish the aims of the fellowship rests with the Fellow (appointed under code FP02).
  2. Length of appointment. Postdoctoral scholars and postdoctoral fellows are temporary appointments at The University of Iowa. The postdoctoral experience at The University of Iowa will not extend past five years, unless there are unusual circumstances. The department would need to send justification of extending this appointment for approval to the Associate Provost for Graduate and Professional Education.