Individual Development Plans for PhDs

What is an Individual Development Plan (IDP)?

An individual development plan (IDP) is a personalized, interactive tool that you can use to identify and prioritize professional goals, and construct an actionable strategy to achieve them. Whether you are planning careers in academia or exploring non-academic positions, you will find IDPs to be a valuable device for managing their career and professional development while at Yale.  An IDP provides tools for you to:

  • Assess your skills, interests and values
  • Explore career options
  • Determine gaps in professional skills and create action plans to develop them
  • Set research and professional goals and track progress

Assessing the transferability of your research and skills will empower you with new perspectives on the value of your PhD work both within and outside of the academy.  IDP tools can also raise your productivity by helping you manage your time, direct your efforts more efficiently, and successfully meet PhD milestones and career development goals.  By achieving greater clarity of career goals earlier in their graduate career, you can position yourself to invest in professional development that will enhance your success in the job market, regardless of your intended career path.


Online IDP Tools

Free online IDP tools for PhD students and postdocs are available online.  Get started with the options below:

  • Versatile PhD (MyPlan) is for PhDs from all disciplines.
  • Imagine PhD is aimed at Humanities and Social Science PhDs but useful for anyone interested in non-STEM careers.  Developed by the Graduate Career Consortium.
  • MyIDP is for STEM PhDs and produced by AAAS.
  • ChemIDP has content relevant to all STEM PhDs, by the American Chemical Society.

Additional Resources from OCS

The Office of Career Strategy offers many resources to help GSAS students and Yale postdocs complete each stage of the IDP. Make progress by taking the following steps:


Career Strategy Essentials with the Office of Career Strategy (GSAS and Postdocs, Spring 2023)

Join OCS this spring for a series of career strategy workshops designed to help you navigate your career journey! We will introduce the many OCS resources at your disposal and cover essential skills like crafting a resume, exploring your interests …

By Jacob Gonzalez
Jacob Gonzalez Senior Associate Director, Graduate and Postdoctoral Career Services
Read more »

2023 3-Minute Thesis Competition Details & Deadlines

Do you have difficulty explaining your research projects to friends and family? Do you wish you could describe your work more clearly in seminars and interviews? Improve your ability to distill your main ideas, demonstrate the relevance of your research …

By Jacob Gonzalez
Jacob Gonzalez Senior Associate Director, Graduate and Postdoctoral Career Services
Read more »

2023 3-Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition Information Session

Friday, January 20th, 12-1pm (held on Zoom)
SEE ZOOM RECORDING HERE

Refer to the Information Session slide deck for more information.

Now in its 7th year, Yale’s 3-Minute Thesis Competition invites Ph.D. students to present their research to the public …

By Jacob Gonzalez
Jacob Gonzalez Senior Associate Director, Graduate and Postdoctoral Career Services
Read more »

PhD Pathways in Biotech and Pharmaceutical Industry

Are you curious about the myriad of career paths available in the bioscience industry? Check out the various opportunities and resources below curated specifically for STEM PhDs.

Understand the Drug Development Process

Bringing a drug candidate to the market is …

By Haofan Li
Haofan Li McDougal Career Fellow
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PhD Pathways in Entrepreneurship, Startups, and VCs

Interested in entrepreneurship, venture capital (VC), or startups? Explore the following resources to learn more about these career paths after a Ph.D. in STEM! 

Learn from GSAS Alums

Colleen Cuffaro
Partner at Canaan Ventures
PhD ’14, Cellular and Molecular Physiology

By Jacob Gonzalez
Jacob Gonzalez Senior Associate Director, Graduate and Postdoctoral Career Services
Read more »

Career Resources

Explore Job Market InsightsIn partnership withLightcast logo

Search continually updated U.S. market trends to learn about job types (job functions), growth trends, and desired skills. The results will include general information about each job (functional area), employment trends from the past two years and projections for the next 10 years, employers that have that role, desired education level, skills for the position, and more!

TWO WAYS TO SEARCH:

  1. Find Career Data by Selecting Keywords: Enter keywords of various job titles and choose a state or search nationwide to learn more about that job.
  2. Filter by Industry and Occupation: Search by industry and choose among popular occupations/job titles within that industry.

First, choose an industry of interest, then filter for occupation. (If you'd like to see data for a specific location only, filter by state.)

Type in a keyword to select a relevant occupation. (If you'd like to see data for a specific location only, filter by state.)

Community Spotlights

CONTACT & LOCATION

Phone
(203) 432-0803
Address

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New Haven, CT 06510

SERVICE HOURS

Academic Year Summer Hours
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T 8:30am - 5pm 8:30am - 4:30pm
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F 8:30am - 5pm 8:30am - 4:30pm

The office is closed weekends, holidays, and recess days.