post·​doc·​tor·​al | \ ˌpōs(t)-ˈdäk-t(ə-)rəl How to pronounce postdoctoral (audio) , ˈpōst-ˌdäk-\
variants: or less commonly postdoctorate \ ˌpōs(t)-​ˈdäk-​t(ə-​)rət How to pronounce postdoctorate (audio) , ˈpōst-​ˌdäk-​ \

Definition of postdoctoral

: being beyond the doctoral level:
a : of or relating to advanced academic or professional work beyond a doctor's degree a postdoctoral fellowship
b : engaged in such work postdoctoral scholars

Examples of postdoctoral in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The scientist received a Ph.D. from Rice University in 2010 and performed postdoctoral research at Stanford University. Wenxin Fan, WSJ, "Chinese Scientist Claims World’s First Genetically Modified Babies," 26 Nov. 2018 Strauss did postdoctoral research in physiology at Washington from 1968-70, taught at Hawaii from 1972-74 and did one year of medical residency at Rutgers from 1974-75, according to those schools. Washington Post, "Sex abuse inquiry on Ohio State doc now includes high school," 30 June 2018 Stock went back to graduate school to study cave development at UC Santa Cruz, earning a PhD in earth sciences in 2004, then did a year of postdoctoral research at the University of Michigan. San Francisco Chronicle, "Insider: Yosemite geologist shares his park favorites," 25 Apr. 2018 This will support the development of independent research careers for a cohort of highly motivated, advanced postdoctoral cancer research scientists whose work shows signs of great promise. David Jesse, Detroit Free Press, "University of Michigan donors' $150 million gift to spur cancer research," 29 Mar. 2018 The delay causes headaches for Eric Jonas, a postdoctoral researcher in electrical engineering and computer science. Melissa Korn, WSJ, "What Time Is It at Berkeley? Ten Minutes Past Reality," 3 Dec. 2018 Dantas was a postdoctoral researcher in the Harvard University lab of George Church, a pioneer in genetics research. Jonathon Keats, Discover Magazine, "Bacteria That Eat Drugs Could Help Solve the Antibiotic Resistance Crisis," 8 Nov. 2018 To demonstrate how powerful these other markers can be, the AP created a visual map of the movements of Princeton postdoctoral researcher Gunes Acar, who carried an Android phone with Location history off, and shared a record of his Google account. Ryan Nakashima, The Seattle Times, "Google tracks your movements, like it or not," 13 Aug. 2018 The forehead is steeper and the brow is more understated, explains study coauthor Alejandra Oritz, a postdoctoral researcher at Arizona State University. National Geographic, "Ancient Royal Tomb Yields Strange New Ape Species," 21 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'postdoctoral.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of postdoctoral

1929, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about postdoctoral

Statistics for postdoctoral

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for postdoctoral

The first known use of postdoctoral was in 1929

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for postdoctoral



English Language Learners Definition of postdoctoral

: relating to work that is done after a PhD has been completed

Comments on postdoctoral

What made you want to look up postdoctoral? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a secret plot to overthrow a government

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Latin Quiz

  • roman forum
  • Which of the following months comes from a Latin word for “ten”?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!