Postdoctoral Policies

The Washington University Postdoctoral Education Policy oversees postdoctoral appointments University-wide. Currently, there are postdocs in the Schools of Medicine, Arts & Sciences, Engineering, Law and Social Work. Those in Clinical Training Programs or Residencies are excluded from these policies.

At the School of Medicine, the School of Medicine Implementation Policy (click to view) oversees postdoctoral appointments in conjunction with the WU Postdoctoral Education Policy. 


Per the WU Postdoctoral Education policy, Washington University limits postdoctoral training to five years, including prior experience. Extensions to the five-year limit must be approved by the Postdoc Policy Review Committee and are generally granted for extenuating circumstances only, such as family, medical or personal reasons or a complete change of research area/lab.  Request for Extension - Guidelines & Form

Effective September 2005, the School of Medicine has approved guidelines for Postdoctoral Appointments on a Temporarily Reduced Schedule. This allows postdoctoral appointees to train on a temporarily reduced schedule for extenuating circumstances upon agreement by both the faculty mentor and the postdoctoral appointee, and approval by the department head and the Postdoc Policy Review Committee. Please see the guidelines for specific instructions and to access the form to request this arrangement.

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