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NIH Biosketch : Personal Statement

Personal Statement

 Personal Statement

Briefly describe why you are well-suited for your role in the project described in this application. The relevant factors may include aspects of your training; your previous experimental work on this specific topic or related topics; your technical expertise; your collaborators or scientific environment; and your past performance in this or related fields (you may mention specific contributions to science that are not included in Section C).  

Also, you may identify up to four research products that specifically highlight your experience and qualifications for this project.

If you wish to explain impediments to your past productivity, you may include a description of factors such as family care responsibilities, illness, disability, and active duty military service.


  • Tailor the Personal Statement to the application.
  • In the first sentence, mention the name of the grant application (e.g., R21) and speak directly to the purpose of the funding mechanism. Sell your role in the proposed research. Why are you a good fit? What strengths do you have for the proposal?
  • Use the Personal Statement to discuss your future research direction if you are a new investigator.
  • If someone is sponsoring/mentoring/collaborating with you, include this in the Personal Statement.

Notes: Peer-Reviewed Publications and Other Research Products

  • Non-peer-reviewed articles and research products can be cited in the Personal Statement along with the peer-reviewed publications.
  • NIH requires a PMCID for works that apply under the NIH Public Access Policy and are authored by the applicant or arise from an applicant’s NIH award.
  • No specific style guide for citations is required. SciENcv formats citations from My Bibliography using the National Library of Medicine (NLM) Style Guide: Citing Medicine.
  • To save on space for the Personal Statement or Contributions to Science sections, applicants may use ‘et al’ in lieu of listing all authors in a citation.
  • Citations can be reused among the Personal Statement or Contributions to Science sections.
  • Manuscripts being prepared or under peer review can be described in the Personal Statement or the Contributions to Science narrative sections, (e.g. “I am preparing a manuscript for Journal on my work about X”), but not cited.
  • Publications noted in a My Bibliography account can be used to auto-populate the Personal Statement or the Contributions to Science sections.


Use SciENcv to create a biosketch. My Bibliography will connect to SciENcv, allowing for auto-population of  the biosketch sections for publications and work products.

There are two ways to populate a My Bibliography collection:

To start: select the blue "Add citation" button on the upper right of the main My Bibliography page.

Image mybibliography-Image005.jpg

A drop-down menu box will appear and prompt you to select the publication type to enter or to add the work from PubMed.