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Ruth L. Kirschstein NRSA for Senior Fellows (F33)

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Please note: NCI no longer accepts F33 applications. 

The Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) F33 provides senior fellowship support to established scientists who wish to make major changes in the direction of their research careers or who wish to broaden their scientific background by acquiring new research capabilities as independent research investigators in scientific health-related fields relevant to the missions of the NCI. This award is designed for sabbatical periods.

Note: The details on this page are for informational purposes only. Please read and follow all requirements and instructions in the notice of funding opportunity (NOFO) and the Table of IC-Specific Information linked therein before applying for an award. Application review information is described in the funding opportunity. If you have any questions before submitting your application, please contact the relevant NCI program staff listed at the end of this page. 

For more complete information, reference the Program Announcement PA-21-047 (F33 Individual Senior Fellowship (Parent F33) and/or contact the program staff.

Applicant Eligibility


At the time of award the candidate must be:

  • a citizen of the United States,
  • or a noncitizen national,
  • or must have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence and possess an Alien Registration Receipt Card (1-151 or 1-551) or some other verification of legal admission as a permanent resident. The candidate must arrange for acceptance by an institution and identify a sponsor.

Citizenship or green card is not needed to apply. Citizenship or green card is needed at the time of award issuance.

Foreign Nationals with Student Visas

Not eligible for this award

Degree/Academic Appointment

Established Investigators (Associate or Full Professors); 7 subsequent years of relevant research or professor experience

Geographic Location

F33 Fellows may request support for training abroad; clear scientific justification is required, including the reasons why the facilities, the sponsor, and/or other aspects of the proposed experience are more appropriate than training in a domestic setting.

Effort Level/ Commitment

At least 40 hours per week, full-time effort, to the training program

Duration of Award

0.5-2 years; the F33 Award is not renewable


Financial Support

Tuition, Fees, Training-Related Expenses & Health Insurance

Tuition and Fees

NCI will pay 60% of the combined amount requested for tuition and fees, up to $4,500 per year.

Training-Related Expenses and Health Insurance

NCI will pay up to $12,200 annually to help defray other research training expenses, such as:

  • Health insurance (self-only or family, as applicable)
  • Staff salaries
  • Consultant costs
  • Equipment
  • Research supplies
  • Faculty/staff travel directly related to the research training program

How to Apply

  • Applicantions must be submitted electronically
  • Applicants must follow the instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Individual Fellowship Application Guide, as well as any program-specific instructions noted in Section IV. of the Program Announcement.
  • When the program-specific instructions deviate from those in the Application Guide, follow the program-specific instructions.
  • Applications that do not comply with these instructions may be delayed or not accepted for review.

Application Receipt Dates and Review Schedule

Receipt Cycle Receipt Date: Application, Resubmission Initial Review Date Council Review Date Earliest Possible Start Date*

April 8




August 8




December 8




*Start dates are determined by the availability of NCI funds and may not occur until well after the earliest possible start date.

Applications are due by 5pm local time.

When a standard submission date falls on a weekend or Federal holiday, the deadline is automatically extended to the next business day.

Review and Selection Process

The Center for Scientific Review (CSR) and the National Cancer Institute (NCI) review applications for completeness and for conformance to all eligibility requirements and special provisions and requirements. Incomplete applications will be returned to the applicant without further consideration.

For review criteria for the F33 grant mechanism, see Section V. of the Program Announcement.

Reminders for Awardees including Changes in Project and Terminations

1. Changes in the Project: Individual NCI F33 fellowship awards are made for training at a specific institution under the guidance of a particular sponsor. Prior approval by NCI is required for a transfer of the award to another institution, a change in sponsor, or a significant project change. If the primary sponsor plans to be absent for a continuous period of more than 3 months, an interim sponsor must be named by the institution and approved in writing by NCI.

2. Termination Requirements:

F33 awardees are required to submit a Termination Notice either when:

  • all institutional dual doctoral degree requirements have been completed; or
  • the F33 project end date listed on the Notice of Award (NoA) has arrived (whichever comes first).

F33 awardees are required to submit a Termination Notice within 30 days of the conclusion of award funding.


NCI Staff Contacts

For additional information regarding policies and/or guidance in preparing an application, contact:

For assistance with xTrain, contact:

For technical issues with xTrain, contact the eRA Service Desk

For information regarding fiscal and/or budget issues, contact:

For information regarding referral and review issues, contact:

  • Referral Officer
    Division of Extramural Activities
    Phone: 240-276-6390
  • Updated: