SRCD U.S. Policy Fellowship Programs

SRCD offers two policy fellowship programs: Federal and State. Both offer immersive opportunities for researchers to learn about policy development, implementation, and evaluation, and how to use developmental science to inform public policy at either the federal or state level in the United States.

The SRCD Federal Policy Fellowship Program includes two types of fellowships, the Congressional Policy Fellowship and the Executive Branch Policy Fellowship. The SRCD State Policy Fellowship Program includes the State Policy Pre-doctoral Fellowship and State Policy Post-doctoral Fellowship.

We are now accepting applications for the 2020-2021 U.S. Policy Fellowship Programs. All applications and letters of intent are due by January 3, 2020, 11:59 PM Eastern. Find out more about the fellowships and how to apply:

Federal Policy Fellowship    State Policy Fellowship

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Why Become a SRCD Policy Fellow?

  • To understand the linkages between research and policy through an immersion experience
  • Learn how to communicate more effectively with policymakers
  • Further expand your career opportunities and network
  • Learn how to formulate more informed and useful questions for policy-related research
  • Use research to inform programs and policies that serve diverse populations
  • Strengthen your skill sets with professional development opportunities

Who Should Apply?

Scholars from a variety of backgrounds and scientific disciplines are encouraged to apply. Just as SRCD itself is an interdisciplinary organization, our fellows have backgrounds from a range of disciplines focusing on child development issues.

  • SRCD Federal Policy Fellowship Program
    • Individuals with a doctorate from any discipline relevant to child development.
    • Early, mid-career, and advanced professionals.
    • Applicants must have received a doctoral-level degree (e.g., Ph.D., Ed.D., M.D.) prior to the start of the fellowship.
  • SRCD State Policy Fellowship Program
    • Individuals who have completed a doctorate within the past two years in any discipline relevant to child development. These applicants must have received a doctoral-level degree (e.g., Ph.D., Ed.D., M.D.) prior to the start of the fellowship.
    • Current doctoral candidates studying any discipline relevant to child development who have completed at least two years of coursework.

I am greatly appreciative of the incredible learning opportunity that the SRCD Policy Fellowship has provided. It has given me a platform to apply my training as a developmental psychologist to the very policy-relevant work that is being conducted on a federal level to improve early childhood systems nationwide.

— Former SRCD Executive Branch Fellow
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Which Fellowship Is Right for Me?


How Do I Apply?

Federal Fellowship Application Site

  • SRCD State Policy Fellowship Program
    We are now accepting letters of intent for the 2020-2021 SRCD State Policy Pre-doctoral and Post-doctoral Fellowship Programs. The online portal is now open. Read more about the State Policy Pre-doctoral and the State Policy Post-doctoral Fellowship application processes.

State Policy Post-doctoral
Application Site
     State Policy Pre-doctoral
Application Site


What Can I Expect From the Fellowship Experience?

The SRCD Federal Policy Fellowship Program began in 1978 with congressional placements. In 1991, the fellowship program added placements in federal executive branch agencies. The SRCD State Policy Fellowship began recently in 2017. To date, there is a network of approximately 200 fellowship alumni. Each year, we ask SRCD Policy Fellows to write a reflection of their experiences in the program. Read first-hand accounts of the policy work to which our fellows are contributing.

Policy Fellowship Experience    2019 - 2020 SRCD Policy Fellows



Contact us via email at or call 202-800-0666.

Federal Policy Fellowship FAQs    State Policy Fellowship FAQs