Predoctoral Training Applicants

Criteria for admission:

  • Strong academic record
  • Research experience and productivity
  • Confirmed commitment and support of faculty mentor
  • Sound scientific writing skills
  • Completion of master's degree preferred but not required

Apply below

Program Details

The MPSI Predoctoral Training Program is open to a limited number of graduate students committed to excellence in research and a career focused on developmental science, especially in family and community settings. The program is designed to complement disciplinary-based preparation and provide students with additional skills for research-related careers in academia or other professional settings.


The Training Program provides a significant number of benefits, responsibilities and opportunities in an interdisciplinary research environment. Our community-team science model focuses on essential experiences in research, education, and community engagement related to infant, child and adolescent development. The Training Program also provides students with structured professional development opportunities. Students are cultivated as junior colleagues and work closely with faculty research mentors in shared scholarly pursuits. If accepted, students are enrolled in August for one year.

Specific benefits for trainees include:

  • An award of $1,500 per semester (students are permitted and encouraged to have other sources of funding)
  • $500 to participate/present research at a professional conference related to developmental science
  • Eligibility to apply for an additional $300 in Fall and Winter semesters to participate in a relevant scientific conference in which the student is the first and presenting author.
  • Advanced training and preparation for a research career, including:
    • Focus on research publications and national presentations
    • Interactions with nationally known experts
    • Broad-based professional development
    • Training in grant writing and publication
    • Opportunities for community-engaged research

Trainee Responsibilities and Expectations


  • Maintain solid academic progress in home department/school
  • Develop MPSI Individual Development Plan and report progress


  • Be engaged actively in relevant research
  • Submit one peer-reviewed publication per year
  • Attend regular MPSI Research Colloquia (usually two per month)
  • Present at the annual MPSI/IOG Lifespan Alliance Research Day

Professional Development

  • Attend the MPSI-IOG Professional Development series presentations
  • Participate actively in the MPSI Graduate Student Organization (GSO)
  • Participate in MPSI governance as a representative to monthly faculty meetings (this responsibility alternates among GSO members). Visit MPSI's GSO website to learn more about our trainees and their reseach.
  • Participate in hosting scientific visitors to MPSI

Community Engagement and Outreach

  • Participate in community-based activity relevant to research and education goals

Frequently Asked Questions


For more information, contact Director Julie Wargo Aikins, PhD, at