National Postdoc Survey

Thank you, postdoctoral community, for your strong support!

The National Postdoc Survey (NPS) was designed from a postdoc perspective, and is based on over 15 years of experience surveying postdocs by the Biological Science Division Postdoctoral Association at the University of Chicago. From this unique data set, we chose questions that highlight essential aspects of the postdoctoral experience, including mentoring, career development, plans, and quality of life.

Over 7,000 postdocs participated in the 2016 version of survey!

Check out the results of the survey, published in eLife.




In 2019, a second updated version of the National Postdoc Survey was launched by the University of Chicago PDA. This version, referred to as the “pre-pandemic survey”, collected responses from nearly 6,300 postdocs from over 300 institutions in the US.  While analysis of the 2019 pre-pandemic survey data was underway, the COVID-19 pandemic commenced, and it became evident that a follow-up survey was necessary to assess the changes brought on by the pandemic in the mindsets and current situations of postdocs.  A shorter “pandemic survey” was launched in 2020 to query what changes the postdocs experienced in their career goals and whether their plans changed since the pandemic started, current perceptions of the job market in academia, and how their research and life has been affected by the pandemic.  All postdocs who completed the 2019 pre-pandemic survey were invited to participate.  Please see the following eLife manuscript which describes our findings:  
Andréanne Morin, Britney A Helling, Seetha Krishnan, Laurie E Risner, Nykia D Walker, Nancy B Schwartz (2022) Research Culture: Surveying the experience of postdocs in the United States before and during the COVID-19 pandemic eLife 11:e75705

Learn more at the official National Postdoc Survey website