Using an Individual Development Plan (IDP): For Students, Postdocs and Faculty

The Value of an IDP
Postdocs who wrote research/career plans at the start of their appointments were 23% more productive than those who did not. They also produced 30% more first-author papers and 25% more grant proposals (2005 Sigma Xi Postdoc Survey)
You First!
Many PIs aren't averse to an IDP - but they expect a student/postdoc to suggest it. Meanwhile, students/postdocs wait for the PI to bring up an IDP, and consider their silence on the topic a signal that the PI is opposed to an IDP. Break this cycle by suggesting an IDP at your next meeting!

What is an Individual Development Plan (IDP)?


An Individual Development Plan is both a product and a process:

  • As a product: an IDP is a written list of training and career goals mapped to a timeline. It serves as a framework for discussion between PI and the student/postdoc.
  • As a process: an IDP is a framework with four phases: 1) assessment, 2) career and professional development considerations, 3) goal setting, and 4) implementation

 

Postdocs who wrote research/career plans at the start of their appointments were 23% more productive than those who did not. They also produced 30% more first-author papers and 25% more grant proposals. 

2005 Sigma Xi Postdoc Survey

 

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