Limited Competition: Stimulating Access to Research in Residency Transition Scholar (StARRTS) (K38 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

Funding Agency:
National Institutes of Health

The purpose of the Stimulating Access to Research in Residency Transition Scholar (StARRTS) K38 Career Development program is to retain and support clinician investigators who have successfully completed the Stimulating Access to Research in Residency (StARR) R38 Program (RFA-HL-18-023 or RFA-HL-23-006) as resident-investigators. Individuals who are awarded K38 grants described in this FOA will be referred to as Transition Scholars. The intent of this FOA is to provide Transition Scholars with opportunities for additional research and career development during subsequent clinical fellowship or early career faculty appointments (as defined in Section III. 3. Additional Information on Eligibility). It is anticipated that the StARRTS K38 program will provide a pathway to retain the newly-created pool of clinician-investigators generated through the StARR R38 program. Transition Scholar grantees will receive support for continued research and career development opportunities in basic, clinical and/or translational research thereby providing enhanced potential to accelerate the transition to independent research careers.

This Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) is designed specifically for applicants proposing research that does not involve leading an independent clinical trial, a clinical trial feasibility study, or an ancillary study to a clinical trial. Applicants to this FOA are permitted to propose research experience in a clinical trial led by a mentor or co-mentor.


  • Application Due Date(s): Oct. 13, 2022; Oct 13, 2023; Oct 11, 2024
  • AIDS Application Due Date(s): January 10, 2023; Jan 10, 2024; Jan 10, 2025

RFA-HL-23-007 Expiration Date January 11, 2025

Agency Website

Eligibility Requirements

Only fellowship programs recognized by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) may be included in the proposed program. For Dental Specialty postgraduate programs, only dental specialties approved by the Council on Dental Education and Licensure of the American Dental Association may be included in the proposed program. For veterinary specialties, only veterinary specialties approved by the American Veterinary Medical Association may be included in the proposed program.

Evidence is required that the overall structure of research and clinical activities outlined in the application is consistent with participant eligibility for certification or endorsement and oversight by a Board recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), or for dentists, meets the requirements for National Certifying Boards for Dental Specialists established by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA) requirements, or for veterinarians, meets the requirements as recognized by the American Board of Veterinary Specialties (ABVS).

Transition Scholar Program Director/Principal Investigator (PD/PI). Health professionals who will have successfully completed the Stimulating Access to Research in Residency (StARR) Program (RFA-HL-18-023), Stimulating Access to Research in Residency (StARR) (R38 Independent Clinical Trial Not Allowed) (RFA-HL-23-006) and started a clinical fellowship or early career faculty position (as instructor or assistant professor for less than 40 months at the time of submission or resubmission) by the time of the K38 award are eligible and encouraged to apply. While the structure of clinical fellowship training may vary among subspecialties, most include at least one year of clinical training and one year of research training. For applicants in clinical fellowship, the StARRTS K38 program is intended to support the Transition Scholar during their research training year(s). The PD/PI is invited to work with his/her mentor and organization to develop an application for support. Individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups as well as individuals with disabilities are always encouraged to apply for NIH support. See, Reminder: Notice of NIH's Encouragement of Applications Supporting Individuals from Underrepresented Ethnic and Racial Groups as well as Individuals with Disabilities, NOT-OD-22-019. Multiple PDs/PIs are not allowed.

Transition Scholar K38-supported research and career development may occur at the same or a different institution as that of the NIH StARR R38 funded Institution where the Transition Scholar's research in residency occurred. In most instances, the K38 application should be submitted by the Institution where the Transition Scholar applicant has been appointed as clinical fellow or early career faculty. For other scenarios, applicants are encouraged to contact the appropriate NIH program staff.

By the time of award, the individual must be a citizen or a non-citizen national of the United States or have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence (i.e., possess a currently valid Permanent Resident Card USCIS Form I-551, or other legal verification of such status).

Clinicians (including those with M.D., D.D.S, D.V.M. and other licensed professionals) in positions not designated as postdoctoral (clinical fellowship) positions: Following clinical residency training, some clinicians directly transition to a faculty position that denotes independence in clinical responsibilities but not in research. Clinicians in such positions who have participated in the NIH R38 StARR program are strongly encouraged to obtain confirmation of their eligibility with NIH Institute or Center staff before they begin to prepare their K38 applications. Such individuals may also wish to consider other career awards (see K Kiosk, for example) available for junior faculty development.

      Amount Description

      See solicitation for details

      Funding Type



      Junior Faculty
      Medical Fellow/Resident


      Medical - Basic Science
      Medical - Clinical Science
      Medical - Translational

      External Deadline

      October 13, 2023