Post-doctoral funding is generally intended to provide further research training for persons who have completed a PhD but are not yet independent investigators. This funding is available through a variety of sources including: foundations, associations and government agencies.
Below are frequently accessed funding sources. You may also visit and search at grants.gov webpage.
Federal Funding Sources
NIH RUTH L. KIRSCHSTEIN NATIONAL RESEARCH SERVICE AWARDS (NRSA)
The objective of the National Research Service Award (NRSA) F32 program is to provide support to promising postdoctoral applicants who have the potential to become productive and successful independent research investigators in scientific health-related fields relevant to the missions of the participating NIH Institutes. Postdoctoral applicants for this award must include a research training proposal that documents the need for the research training and the expected value of the proposed fellowship experience as it relates to the individual’s goals for a career as an independent researcher.
There are a variety of award mechanisms under this umbrella. Please see the NIH website for more details.
NIH PATHWAY TO INDEPENDENCE AWARD
The primary, long-term goal of the Pathway to Independence (PI) Award program is to increase and maintain a strong cohort of new and talented NIH-supported independent investigators. The PI award program is designed to facilitate a timely transition from a mentored postdoctoral research position to a stable independent research position with independent NIH or other independent research support at an earlier stage than is currently the norm.
The PI award will provide up to 5 years of support consisting of two phases. The initial phase will provide 1-2 years of mentored support for highly promising, postdoctoral research scientists. This phase will be followed by up to 3 years of independent support contingent on securing an independent tenure-track or equivalent research position. The PI award is limited to postdoctoral trainees who propose research relevant to the mission of one or more of the participating NIH Institutes and Centers (ICs).
For more information please see PA-10-063 on the NIH Web Site.
INSTITUTIONAL TRAINING GRANTS
These types of grants, offered by the National Institutes of Health, are awarded to an individual institution as the primary means of supporting postdoctoral research training. The primary objective is to prepare qualified individuals for careers that have a significant impact on the health-related research needs of the Nation. Individuals interested in applying for funding through an institution's training grant mechanism must contact the institution directly for detailed information. More information about Institutional Training Grants can be found on the NIH website.
Institutions with training grants of interest to neurologic physical therapists during postdoctoral training:
Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Moss Rehabilitation Research Institute, Translational Neurorehabilitation Research Program
Northwestern University, Biomedical Engineering
University of California-Irvine, Multidisciplinary Exercise Science Training Program
University of Southern California, Division of Biokinesiology & Physical Therapy
Washington University in St. Louis, Program in Physical Therapy
Foundation Funding Sources
FOUNDATION FOR PHYSICAL THERAPY
The Foundation for Physical Therapy offers the New Investigator Fellowship Training Initiative (NIFTI) for postdoctoral research fellows. This two year fellowship is intended to fund a mentored research experience in continuation of the development of recent post-professional, doctorally prepared physical therapist researchers.
For more infomation, visit the Foundation for Physical Therapy web site.
AMERICAN HEART ASSOCIATION
These postdoctoral fellowships are designed to help a trainee initiate a career in cardiovascular research while obtaining significant research results.
Please see the American Heart Association webpage for further details.
NATIONAL MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS SOCIETY
The National MS Society offers postdoctoral training fellowships to attract and train promising investigators and clinicians while supporting research conducted under the mentorship of senior scientists.
Visit the National Multiple Sclerosis Society
for further details
AMERICAN FEDERATION FOR AGING RESEARCH
This program is for postdoctoral fellows who direct their research research towards translational findings with direct benefits to human aging.
Visit the American Federation for Aging Research
for further details.