Saturday, November 1, 2008

PhD positions, Molecular & Cellular Biology, Heidelberg, Germany

Application and Admission

Please read the following instructions carefully!

The next HBIGS International Call for applications will be open from
15 October 2008 to 1 December 2008. Only applications submitted via
the online application system will be considered! Applications sent
by e-mail or mail will be discarded without further notice.

1. External applicants
Students who are not yet accepted for a PhD position in a research
group of an HBIGS project leader may apply to max. two of the
following research areas (view open PhD projects):
- Developmental Biology
- Infectious Diseases
- Molecular Biology of the Cell
- Molecular Biotechnology & Biophysics
- Molecular Plant Sciences
- Neurosciences
- Structural Biology & Biochemistry
- Systems Biology, Bioinformatics & Mathematical Biology

Please note: Applicants who submit more than one application will
automatically be excluded from the application process!

2. Internal applicants
PhD students of Heidelberg University who work in a research group
of an HBIGS project leader and who have started or will start their
PhD thesis between 01 June 2008 and 15 March 2009 (dates as stated
on the “Annahme als Doktorand” letter) are eligible to apply for
HBIGS during this call.

Admission requirements

Applicants must not be older than 30 years at the respective
application deadline.

The minimal requirement for admission into the Graduate School is a
university degree from an internationally accredited university that
would allow the applicant to enter a PhD program in biosciences in
the country where the degree was awarded. Depending on the country,
this may be a Masters, Licentiate or Diploma in Natural Sciences or

In addition, applicants are requested to provide the following

1. Secondary school leaving certificate/Academic records
Submit with your application your Secondary school leaving
certificate and official transcripts of academic records from every
postsecondary institution attended for at least one year as a full-
time student. Academic records should give information on the type
and content of courses taken (Diploma supplement) and the grades you
received. Your rank in class should be noted whenever possible. If
the institution does not issue records in German, English, or
French, original language records must be submitted with
translations. All Applicants are expected to have received their
final certificates (Master, Diploma etc.) before 15 March 2009!

2. Curriculum Vitae (CV)

3. Proof of English language ability
If your native language is not English, proof of an adequate command
of spoken and written English is required for admission.
Proof can be provided either by
a) a TOEFL certificate ( (Score requirements: Paper
based: 570+, Computer based: 230+, Internet based: 90+),
b) an IELTS certificate ( (Score requirements: band
6.5+) ,
c) a Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English (CAE ),
Applicants who took part in an undergraduate program in which the
language of instruction was English are asked to provide a suitable
certificate from their Faculty. Applicants who are enrolled in the
MSc programs Molecular and Cellular Biology (MCB), Molecular
Biosciences or Molecular Biotechnology at Heidelberg University do
not have to provide proof of language proficiency.

4. Statement of Purpose
Write a statement (+/- 500 words) describing why you wish to become
a member of HBIGS, your preparation for this field of study and your
future career plans. Describe the area of biology you find most
interesting, your previous research experience, and other aspects of
your background and interests which may aid the admissions committee
in evaluating your aptitude and motivation for the programme.
External applicants may also indicate their preferred research group
or project.

5. Two Letters of reference

6. Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Scores (optional)
The scores of the GRE Subject Test in Biochemistry, Molecular and
Cellular Biology are not required for application but a good score
will strengthen your application. Scores must be from an examination
taken within the last three years. For information on test dates and
formats, visit

Time frame for PhD student recruitment

Application Deadline:
01 December 2008

Final Shortlist and invitation
of candidates:

15 December 2008

Interviews: 20-22 January 2009

Admission letters:
January 2009

Start of PhD core course
Mid March 2009

Selection Procedure

1. After eligibility has been checked, the files will be sent to the
respective group leaders and the Executive Board for further

2. All short-listed candidates will be invited, as a group, for
interviews to Heidelberg. The interview process will require three
days and will include panel interviews by several group leaders.
During the panel interviews, the candidates will give a short oral
presentation of their preferred research project (free speech, no
media), introducing the scientific background, suggesting research
directions and explaining how their qualifications meet the
requirements of the research project. The oral presentation is
followed by a question and answer session related to the research
project selected by the candidate.

3. Admission letters will go out shortly after the interview process.