Promoting research productivity in new faculty: A developmental perspective of the early postdoctoral years

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2 Scopus citations


The years immediately after attainment of the doctorate can be conceptualized as an adult development phase. Four developmental principles operate to influence scholarly productivity in these early postdoctoral years. The first, rhythmicity, which involves the rhythm of learning and the way faculty pattern their roles throughout the research process, can be divided into three stages: romance, the exploration of and attachment to research ideas; precision, the focusing on methodologic details; and generalization, the addressing of pragmatic issues of knowledge building. The second principle, the contextualdialectic, suggests contextual factors are important in developing the research career, especially factors that produce conflict. The third principle, unidirectionality, refers to the forward movement of professional development and incorporates trading-away of certain roles and concepts and a retrogression in development. The final principle, multidimensionality, can be understood in terms of developmental precursors and vestiges as decisions and actions of the early postdoctoral years that influence later career success. The four principles are presented as a framework for understanding and facilitating research productivity during the early postdoctoral years but may also be useful to other phases of the research career.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)119-125
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Professional Nursing
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1988


  • Career development
  • Research, facilitation of
  • Research, postdoctoral

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


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