BioMed processes all postdoc actions including new hire, reappointment, extension, resignation, termination, promotion, LOA, salary change, and title change. A summary checklist and explanation of the appointment process, below, will help managers determine which documents are required to process each action and the steps involved once all documentation is received by BioMed Postdocs. Please use this Google form to submit your appointment request - this form is available to specific administrators.  If you have any questions or if you are unable to submit using this form, please contact [email protected].

According to the Provost Handbook of Academic Administration, Section 4.7.3 (July 2013), postdoc appointments must meet the following criteria:

  1. Be hired for at least 12 months
  2. Hold a PhD or equivalent degree
  3. Have fewer than 5 years postdoc experience
  4. Be paid through Brown University or external funding.

If a postdoc comes to Brown with more than five (5) years of experience, the appointment is processed by the Office of BioMed Faculty Affairs (BMFA).

Postdoc Titles

The Division of Biology & Medicine offers two postdoc titles:

Postdoctoral Research Associates are employees of the University: they receive a salary and all employee benefits for which they are eligible, and the research grants or other Brown University funds which support them are assessed accordingly. Individuals are appointed on an annual basis, for a maximum term of five years.

Postdoctoral Fellows are in residence to conduct research supported by fellowships or training grants; they are paid stipends. Postdoc Fellows are not Brown employees, but they may participate in a University health and dental plan. Individuals are appointed on an annual basis, for a maximum term of five years.

More information on differences between the two titles can be found at the Postdocs at Brown website.

Forms Required to Hire a New Postdoc

As of March, 2018, a Chair Memo is no longer required.  Required documents should be submitted via the Google form (above) as a single .pdf file.

  1. Postdoc Action Form (PDAF)
  2. Current CV (no biosketches)
  3. Individual Development Plan
  4. LOR, three (3) - Acceptable formats:
    1. Hard copy, signed, dated, on letterhead OR
    2. Email, with date, and official signature line including name, title, and institution of recommender.
  5. Proof of PhD - Acceptable formats:
    1. Documentation from authorized official of the degree-granting institution certifying all degree requirements have been met and that the thesis has been turned in (signed, dated, on letterhead)
    2. Photocopy of doctoral diploma
    3. Memo from graduate mentor or Department Chair attesting to completion of requirements and that the thesis has been turned in (signed, dated, on letterhead) 
      Note: On first day of work, postdoc must provide either 1 or 2 if not provided when paperwork was processed.

Additional Documentation Required for New Postdocs Hired with J-1 Visas

In a separate packet, please prepare the following documents. You (the departmental representative) will send them to OISSS once you have received a signed appointment/reappointment letter from OGPS.

  1. DS 2019 Form
  2. CV
  3. Exchange Visitor's passport (biographical page)

For more information on J-1 visas at Brown, please visit OISSS's website.

Note: As soon as the appointment/reappointment letter is sent to you, please make sure the postdoc signs the letter accepting the terms and return a copy to [email protected] as well as forwarding a copy of the letter and other paperwork to OISSS.

Additional Documentation Required for New Postdocs Hired Through a Department Search

See Postdoc Search Process page for blank copies of these documents.

  1. Close Research - Report Document
  2. CVs of all finalist(s)

Additional Guidance for Brown Grad Students Transitioning to Postdoctoral Appointments

There are times when a PhD Brown student will complete their graduate work and transition to a Post-doc appointment at Brown.  We are happy to help you manage this process but want to be sure that all aspects of the transition are handled properly so students can be appointed as Postdocs.  

As Brown PhD students finish their PhD training, you may want to hire these students as Postdocs.  Please note the following:
⦁    Students MUST complete all requirements prior to Appointment Date.  Thesis defense is NOT completion.  A full listing of completion requirements can be found here.

In addition to the submission of the thesis, additional items that must be completed include:

  1. A Letter of Clearance from the Bursar indicating that all outstanding debts, the $50 dissertation fee, and the $150 filing fee (if applicable) have been paid; this may be sent by email.
  2. PhD Exit Survey, Brown University Graduate School; you may forward the email receipt.
  3. Survey of Earned Doctorates, National Research Council (The NRC sends the certificate directly to the Graduate School.)
  4. The title page; this may be sent by email.
  5. The abstract; this may be sent by email.
  6. The original signed signature page.

The student can get a “receipt” for this information and our office can confirm this with the Graduate School once the student lets you know they’ve completed.  If the student is in a BioMed program, OGS may be able to confirm completion independently.  IF a student is in “active” status within the semester that the Dept and/or program expects them to complete requirements, the Dept should contact [email protected] to request the following:

⦁    A change in status from “Active” to “enrollment terminated, requirements pending (or complete)”
⦁    The date that the Graduate Student’s stipend should be ended (the 15th or last day of the month).  

Please note that student’s status is “Active” and enrollment is continuous until we request this change.  Students' stipends cannot change or end without permission from OGS.  A postdoctoral appointment cannot begin until PhD requirements are complete and all required items stated above are completed. Departments are encouraged to submit postdoctoral appointment requests to OGS at least two weeks in advance of intended start dates. Appointments can usually be made conditional upon completion of PhD requirements, and start dates can be adjusted as need be. With some advance planning, we can make this a smooth and timely transition for our students to postdocs.