Dear UAB Faculty Member:

The documents located above are provided to assist you in the appointment of a Postdoctoral Scholar and the establishment of the terms and conditions for the position offer. A Postdoctoral Recruitment/Appointment Checklist for Mentors is also provided to help you through the process. The Office of Postdoctoral Education (OPE) is here to facilitate this process, so please do not hesitate to contact us should questions arise. Listed below are some important points I would like you to consider in making the appointment. We have found them very helpful in avoiding misunderstandings during the training period:

1. Postdoctoral Scholars have terms and conditions, including vacation, UAB minimum salary, and maternity/paternity leave to which they are entitled according to UAB policy. If you are unfamiliar with these, please check our Web site at
2. At the time of making an offer the resources must be available for both the salary and requirements for training for the period of the appointment (one year). If you have concerns in this area, please discuss with the chair of your department before making this commitment.
3. Appointments are for one year and may be renewable annually for up to an additional three years upon written agreement between the mentor and the postdoc. If the mentor does not intend to reappoint the postdoc for another year, the mentor must notify the postdoc in writing three months prior to the reappointment date. Following the first year of appointment and in subsequent years, if it is apparent that funding will no longer be available or for any other reason, a minimum of three months’ notice prior to termination must be given to the postdoc in writing by the mentor. The 3 month notice would start from a mutually agreed upon date.
4. The offer letter should include a description of performance expectations, responsibilities and position requirements (see sample Letter of Offer).
5. The primary purpose for a postdoctoral position is for training and you are encouraged early in the appointment to establish performance bench marks, monitor progress, and record keeping on a regular basis. A formal feedback is appropriate in a training environment and if problems do arise then it is important to document these together with any corrective action you have instituted.
6. We offer several competitive awards during the year for postdocs – see the OPE website for information.

We all recognize what an important role Postdoctoral Scholars play in the research environment at UAB. The Office of Postdoctoral Education is here to help ensure that this is a rewarding experience for both the mentors and trainees. Please contact us if you have any suggestions or comments on this process or any other aspect of Postdoctoral Education at UAB.


Lisa M. Schwiebert, Ph.D.
Associate Dean Office of Postdoctoral Education
Professor of Cell, Developmental, and Integrative Biology