Choosing your supporters

Applications for Fellow need two supporters who you can choose for yourself. Please consider the following when choosing your supporters.

  • At least one of your supporters should be a Fellow of the Institute of Physics
  • Occasionally the panel will accept applications from people who have only one IOP Fellow supporting them. In this case the second supporter should be a Fellow of a suitable professional body and the reason for your choice should be explained in a covering letter
  • One supporter should be outside your workplace. The panel request this to ensure independence of opinion
  • Both supporters should have known you (or know of you) for at least two years

Where to find your supporters
The first choice for anyone locating a supporter is their immediate surroundings. If you are working for a scientific or engineering company or department it is likely that others in your organisation will already be members of a professional body.

Many members do not use their designatory letters (such as "FInstP") after their names, so it helps if you actively tell people you are looking for someone with the appropriate membership.

Human resources departments sometimes keep records of who among the staff in your organisation holds professional membership so they may also be able to advise you.

Your supporter does not have to work for the same company as you - they could be clients, customers or collaborators. If you keep business cards have a look through them and see who has relevant letters after their name. This person will need to have known you for at least 2 years and be able to comment on your work.

If you have not been successful so far there are several options open to you.

Current members of the Institute, wherever in the world you are based, who are looking to upgrade their membership will have access to the Internet Register of Member, IROM. This can be found at, where you should log in and select Find a Member from towards the top of the page.

Login to MyIOP

If you are not currently in membership you will not be able to access this information.

If after trying the suggestions listed you still cannot find a suitable supporter you will now need to choose someone who is not suitably qualified but who is familiar with your work. We aim to understand all our applicant's different circumstances so to help us understand your choice you will need to explain it in a short covering letter, which should accompany your application.

Suitable people without the necessary qualifications could be people such as:

  • Your head of department or director.
  • A person who is a senior member of another professional body (such as the IET)

If you are still having trouble locating a supporter please contact the membership department for advice.


Membership Department
Institute of Physics
76 Portland Place
United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0) 20 7470 4800