The Individual Development Plan
Why is it important?
In 2005, Sigma Xi conducted a postdoc survey for better understanding postdoc needs and experiences (Davis, G. 2005. Doctors without orders. American Scientist 93(3, supplement)). The results have shown that research/ career plans for postdocs provide a framework of accountability and responsibility. Furthermore, the data showed that postdocs that had a structured plan as compared to those without a plan were over all more satisfied, gave their advisor higher ratings, had fewer conflicts, submitted more grants and published more.
The IDP is a concept used in career development to help employees to define and pursue their career goals. The IDP is extremely important as it:
- Helps identify short- and long-term goals
- Serves as a reminder to achieving these goals
- Serves as a great conversation starter between the mentor and the postdoc about their career goals and how to achieve them
For more information about the IDP, please visit our Career Development section.
To complete your IDP:
- Go to the Postdoc Database website
- Login using your Emory user ID/password
- Click on IDP on the left hand menu
- Complete and submit the form
An automatic email will be sent to your Mentor to review and comment on your completed IDP. You do not have to send a copy to OPE.
Resources about the IDP
- You Need a Game Plan (Science Careers) - introduction to the myIDP tool
- MyIDP - free tool from Science Careers
- Yearly Planning Meetings: Individualized Development Plans Aren’t Just More Paperwork - excellent article in Molecular Cell about IDP that you can share with your mentor
- Individual Development Plan for Postdoctoral Fellows (FASEB) - covers the basics and execution of an IDP from the postdoc and mentor point of views
- Career Planning: Question Time (Nature Jobs)