Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Individual Predoctoral Fellowship to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (F31-Diversity)
The F31-Diversity award supports research training for predoctoral students from diverse backgrounds including those from groups that are underrepresented in the biomedical, behavioral, or clinical research workforce. The mentored research experience is supported for up to 5 years for predoctoral students, or up to 6 years for students enrolled in M.D./Ph.D. (or other combined dual-doctoral degree) programs (see below for program director/principal investigator eligibility). The fellowship experience is expected to enhance the trainee's potential to develop into a productive, independent research scientist.
Notice of funding opportunity
- PA-23-271, Parent F31-Diversity: Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Individual Predoctoral Fellowship to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research
- New applications and resubmissions: April 8, August 8, December 8
- AIDS applications: May 7, September 7, January 7
Program director/principal investigator (PD/PI) eligibility
The F31-Diversity program is specifically designed to support research and clinical training leading to the Ph.D. or equivalent research degree (e.g., Eng.D., D.N.Sc., Dr.PH., D.S.W., Pharm.D., Sc.D.), the combined M.D./Ph.D. degree, or another formally combined professional degree and research doctoral degree in the biomedical, behavioral, or clinical sciences.
For the purpose of this announcement, institutions are encouraged to recruit potential student participants from diverse backgrounds, as outlined in NIH’s Notice of Interest in Diversity (NOT-OD-21-031).
The applicant must be at the dissertation research stage of training at the time of award and must show evidence of high academic performance in the sciences, and commitment to a career as an independent research scientist or as an independent physician-scientist or other clinician-scientist (dual-degree training).
By the time of award, the applicant must be a citizen or a non-citizen national of the United States or have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence (i.e., possess a currently valid Permanent Resident Card USCIS Form I-551, or other legal verification of such status).
- U.S. domestic and non-domestic institutions
- Non-domestic (non-U.S.) entities (foreign institutions)
- Foreign components allowed
Individuals may receive up to 5 years of aggregate Kirschstein-NRSA support at the predoctoral level (up to 6 years for dual degree training, e.g., M.D./Ph.D.), including any combination of support from institutional training grants (e.g., T32) and an individual fellowship award. Information about previous Kirschstein-NRSA support must be included in the application and will be considered at the time of award.
NIMH limits predoctoral support to the first 6 years of Ph.D. research and clinical training (excluding clinical internship) except in exceptional circumstances. Potential applicants are encouraged to discuss their individual circumstance with a NIMH Research Training and Career Development Program representative before applying if they intend to request support beyond 6 years.
At the time of award, applicants are required to pursue their research training on a full-time basis, normally defined as 40 hours per week or as specified by the sponsoring institution in accordance with its own policies.
NIMH support two types of F31 applications (Parent F31 and Parent F31-Diversity). This Parent F31-Diversity is for predoctoral students from diverse backgrounds including those from groups that are underrepresented in the biomedical, behavioral, or clinical research workforce. When submitting, be sure to apply to the appropriate parent announcement (see PD/PI Eligibility above).
Salary and research support
The F31-Diversity budget provides a stipend (salary support), tuition and fees, and an institutional allowance to help defray the cost of fellowship expenses such as health insurance, research supplies, equipment, books, and travel to scientific meetings.
One stipend level is used for all predoctoral applicants, regardless of the level of experience. Stipend levels, as well as funding amounts for tuition and fees and the institutional allowance are announced annually in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts . Current stipends are also posted on the NRSA fellowship webpage .
For a complete list of funded awards and grants, please visit NIH RePORTER .
Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to review the notices of funding opportunities and the frequently asked questions (FAQs) below prior to contacting the appropriate NIMH Research Training and Career Development representative for additional information.
For general NRSA FAQs, see NIMH NRSA Fellowship FAQs or NIH Research Training and Career Development FAQs.
Q: How does the F31-Diversity application process differ from that of the F31?
A: For the F31-Diversity application, the applicant must include a letter from the institution certifying the applicant would be contributing to diversity in biomedical research. Applications that do not contain this letter may be withdrawn before review.
Q: Do I need to identify a sponsor prior to preparing my application for submission?
A: Yes. Before submitting the application, the applicant must identify a sponsor(s) who will supervise the proposed mentored training experience.
Q: How important is it to contact NIMH prior to submission? How early should I do this?
A: It is very important to have pre-submission correspondence with the NIMH Research Training and Career Development representative overseeing the relevant individual NRSA fellowship program. Applicants are encouraged to email them several months in advance of the submission deadline to provide information regarding their proposed application, including their NIH biosketch, specific aims page, and their sponsor's name.
Q: How can I tell if my research area is within the mission of NIMH?
A: Program priorities at NIMH are diverse but meet the institute’s guiding mission to transform the understanding and treatment of mental illnesses through basic and clinical research, paving the way for prevention, recovery, and cure. NIMH is also interested in research to reduce the incidence of HIV worldwide and to decrease the burden of living with HIV. The research proposed should be well-aligned with NIMH’s Strategic Plan. Before preparing an individual NRSA fellowship application potential applicants are strongly encouraged to contact the appropriate NIMH Research Training and Career Development Program representative for feedback on the project’s fit with current NIMH or the Division of AIDS Research priorities. We recommend contacting NIMH at least a few months before the deadline.
For a complete list of funded awards and grants please visit NIH RePORTER .
Q: Do I have to be a doctoral candidate to submit an F31-Diversity application?
A: No. At the time of submission, the applicant does not need to be at the dissertation stage of training. However, by the time an award is made, the applicant must be at the dissertation research stage of training and must show evidence of high academic performance in the sciences, and commitment to a career as an independent research scientist. If you are unsure about when you should apply, please contact the appropriate NIMH Research Training and Career Development representative.
Q: I am an M.D./Ph.D. student in the fifth year of my dual-degree program, and I am no longer eligible to apply for the F30. Am I eligible to apply for the F31-Diversity?
A: Yes. However, support will be limited to the first 6 years of dissertation research and clinical training (excluding clinical internship). Potential applicants are encouraged to discuss their individual situation with the appropriate NIMH Research Training and Career Development representative before applying if they intend to request support beyond 6 years.