Individual Development Plan (IDP)
The IDP is a tool designed to help graduate students:
- identify professional goals and objectives
- assess individual skill sets relative to career goals
- develop a plan to acquire the skills and competencies needed to achieve short- and long-term career objectives.
A well-crafted IDP can serve as both a planning and a communications tool. The process of creating an IDP encourages students to consider additional options as they identify and refine their own research and career goals, and should foster improved communication between students and their mentors and advisors.
Graduate students can use their IDP to help identify professional development opportunities and training that is targeted towards their own specific objectives. By clarifying their objectives and communicating with others about how to best achieve them, students are encouraged to consider more options, and should enjoy a more successful and focused graduate training experience.
IDP development, implementation, and revisions require a series of steps to be conducted by graduate students and their mentors. These steps are an interactive effort, and so both the student and the mentor must participate fully in the process.