Standards for Postdoc Training

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Science  20 Apr 2012:
Vol. 336, Issue 6079, pp. 276
DOI: 10.1126/science.1222476

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Postdoctoral (Postdoc) training has become virtually institutionalized in many parts of the world as a discrete stage in the career progression in most science and engineering fields. However, there is far too much variability in what such training involves, across institutions and among the laboratories within them. Given its importance and pervasiveness—there are over 50,000 postdocs in the United States alone—we need to establish and enforce standards, norms, and expectations for mentors, mentees, and their institutions that are analogous to those for undergraduate and graduate education.