"Psychology and Medicine" Postdoctoral Fellowship Program

"Psychology and Medicine:  Translational Research on Stress, Behavior and Disease"

Thank you very much for your interest in the Psychology and Medicine Postdoctoral Fellowship.

The application period for postdoctoral fellowship positions starting September 2015 is now closed. We will be accepting applications for the September 2016 cohort starting in the fall of 2015. Underrepresented minorities are encouraged to apply.

Description of program and admission procedure

Program Focus. This NIMH-funded postdoctoral program trains researchers to link basic psychological theories and research to preventing and ameliorating disease. There are two areas, and cross-cutting both areas is a consideration of disparities in mental and physical illness and the mechanisms by which they occur. The two areas are: (1) Health-risking behavior: Fellows in this area focus on developing and applying theories of risk perception, social learning, cognitive development, and risk-taking to understand and modify health-risk behaviors, especially those that contribute to exposure to the HIV virus, as well as those contributing to addictive behaviors. There is an emphasis on developmental processes and on adolescence as a critical period. (2) Stress, depression, psychobiology and disease: Fellows in this area focus on theories of the meaning and appraisal of stress, cognitive and affective responses that result from these appraisals, and biological concomitants of these responses that result in disease. We emphasize common pathways to multiple disease outcomes, especially those spanning mental and physical illness.  

Program Structure. Fellows will be appointed for two years. In some instances, an optional third year may be possible. It is expected that about one-third of the fellow's time will be spent in formal seminars. All fellows take a core Health Psychology Seminar and a Research Process Seminar in both years of the fellowship and may take other courses and seminars.

The remaining two-thirds of the fellows’ time will be spent in research. Fellows will participate in their faculty mentor's research laboratory and will develop their own research study.

Faculty. There are 30 faculty in our program (8 leadership faculty, 18 teaching faculty, 4 statistics faculty),  including psychologists, psychiatrists, internists, pediatricians, sociologists, and biostatisticians. Fellows will be expected to work with a primary mentor from among the the faculty. 

Stipend. Stipend levels are set by NIMH and depend on years of related experience.

Admission Procedure

The program is designed to provide an extension of research training for those who have obtained a PhD in Psychology. However, we will consider applicants with other doctoral degrees or with professional degrees (e.g., MDs) if they can establish their mastery of psychological theory and methods needed to undertake postdoctoral research training. In order to qualify for this federally funded grant, an applicant must be a U.S. citizen, a non-citizen national or a foreign national possessing a visa permitting permanent residence in the U.S.; having a temporary or student visa is not acceptable under this grant. However, we would be happy to consider applications of non-citizens if applicants are able to find funding individually through their own government or other sources.

Applicants should send a letter describing (1) their background, (2) area of interest, and (3) what they would like to accomplish in their postdoctoral training, including what research they would like to do. If not already sent, a current curriculum vitae should be included. Applicants should also arrange for three letters of reference to be sent, either by e-mail (as PDF attachment), or by postal service/FedEx, directly to us. Please send PDF reference letters to: HealthPsychology@ucsf.edu. E-mail reference letters should have the referrer's digital signature, as well as be sent from the referrer's e-mail address.

If your reviewers prefer to send their reference letters by mail, they can send them to:

Nancy Adler, PhD
c/o Russell Heiman
University of California, San Francisco
Health Psychology Program
3333 California Street, Suite 465
San Francisco, CA 94143-0848
Zip code for FedEx: (94118)

Tel: 415-476-7285
Fax: 415-476-7744
Email: HealthPsychology@ucsf.edu

Soon after the closing date for applications, we will review all applications and identify the most competitive applicants at that time. We will ask for phone or in-person interviews to help make final decisions and to determine which faculty member would be the most appropriate to serve as a primary mentor. Final decisions will be made on the basis of the strength of the applicant, fit with the program, and maintaining a balance of interests among the fellows.

The application period for postdoctoral fellowship positions starting September 2015 is now closed. We will start accepting applications for the September 2016 postdoctoral positions in the fall of 2015. Fellows must begin the program by September 2016 and must have completed the PhD and have supporting documentation (or other doctoral-level degree) by that time.

The Faculty of the Department of Psychiatry of the University of California, San Francisco, affirms as one of its major priorities the training of women and minorities for academic careers. Underrepresented minorities are encouraged to apply.

For further information, please contact:

Russell Heiman
Program Assistant
Health Psychology Postdoctoral Fellowship Program
University of California, San Francisco
3333 California Street, Ste. 465
San Francisco, CA 94143-0848

Email: HealthPsychology@ucsf.edu
Tel: 415.476.7285
Fax: 415.476.7744