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Most postdocs I have applied for wanted a cover letter (including research interests) and a CV.

I have now come across one that wants both a cover letter and a one page research statement.

The cover letter should be a very short document just stating my interest in the position and what is included, while the research statement should go over what research I have done an my interest in the project, right?

  • Yes, essentially. Hopefully, after reading the answers to this question and this one (both about research statements), the difference should become more clear. – Clément Nov 19 '17 at 22:14
  • Also (hopefully this is obvious, but just so it's written down for future readers) the text itself should not be overlapping - not even a sentence. Otherwise it looks like you can't write a page without copying and pasting from somewhere. That would be bad. – AJK Nov 19 '17 at 23:15
  • Are you saying most postdoc applications in your area don't ask for a separate research statement? (In my field, math, any research-oriented position will ask for a separate research statement, and the cover letter typically just includes a paragraph about your research interests/accomplishments.) – Kimball Nov 21 '17 at 2:16
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Yes, you have it right. Just be very careful not to repeat yourself in either of the documents.

The reason they're asking is because they feel they are different enough documents that they should be completely separate, and you should probably treat them the same (in this case).

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