Application process:

I. Complete the application for admission. Please note that the Supervision Agreement (which is provided after filling the online application) must only be completed and signed after admission.

If you have been enrolled at the University of Göttingen before, you can login via eCampus to access the pre-filled form.

II. Send the application package.
The application package consists of:
- our cover sheet (pdf),
- transcripts / academic records (Studienbuch) of your studies,
- all academic degree diplomas (only university degrees, no secondary education degrees!),
- certificates of other relevant examinations (e.g. GRE, if available),
- English proficiency certificates (min. level C1, i.e. IELTS 6.5, TOEFL iBT 110),
- statement by (prospective) supervisor incl. preliminary title, starting date of PhD project, prospective thesis committee members (if already known), details on funding (contract/stipend, funding source, duration of funding). If funding is not yet available for the entire duration of PhD or if supervisors plans lab move: include declaration by department that they will take over the supervision and funding.
- short abstract of your PhD thesis (half or one A4-page is only required for the application for the programs Molecular Biology of Cells, Cellular and Molecular Physiology of the Brain and Systems Neuroscience)
- optionally: max. two reference letters,
- optionally: 1 (one) passport photograph.

Please send regular (i.e. uncertified) copies. These are sufficient during the application process.
If your documents are in a language other than German or English, you need to include copies of the official translation (into German or English) as well.
Please send the documents by e-mail to the following address:

-Applications for Physics of Biological and Complex Systems: e-mail:

-Applications for Molecular Medicine: e-mail:

To apply for the International Max Planck Research School for Genome Science, please see their application page:

III. The GGNB office will check the formal requirements for admission upon receipt of the application package:

-Master's degree with very good grades in the natural sciences or mathematics, including a Master's thesis with a minimum duration of six months.
Please note that due to the peculiarities of the German university system, medical degrees are not considered as equivalent to an MSc in the natural sciences.
In case of MSc degrees from abroad, it may be that the faculty requests the fulfillment of additional requirements before the admission to doctoral studies (e.g. an oral exam, a written progress report after 6 months, etc.).

-English proficiency / language requirements: Candidates have to be fluent in written and spoken English. Candidates whose mother tongue is not English can demonstrate sufficient knowledge of English e.g. by having completed MSc studies in English and also by internationally recognized tests such as TOEFL or IELTS or equivalent achievements. During online application, applicants can indicate proven higher education in English or a reasonably long stay in an English-speaking country, if applicable. Knowledge of the German language is not required, but international students will be offered opportunities to take German courses.

-Optional: references: During online registration, two referees may be indicated by the applicant who are able to comment on her/his personal and academic background and who may be contacted for references if the admission panel decides so. This information is sufficient for your application. Should you have letters of recommendation available, these can be included in your application package in separate and closed envelopes, stamped with the institutional seal and signed personally by the referee. References can also be submitted by a referee directly to GGNB office via e-mail. Notice that only letters of reference submitted from an institutional e-mail address will be considered.

IV. Screening:
The admission board will screen the application reg. the qualification of the candidate and the thematic fit of the prospective PhD project.

V. Presentation:
After successful screening by the admission board, soon after starting the thesis project, the candidate will present his/her project in front of the admission panel who will decide on the admission to the doctoral program.

VI. Enrollment:
All doctoral students have to be enrolled at the University of Göttingen for the entire duration of their PhD thesis project. PhD students can enroll throughout the year, i.e. independent of deadlines. Once you have been notified about your admission to GGNB, you are asked to enroll/matriculate at the University of Göttingen within four weeks.

For information on the enrollment procedure for the summer term 2020, see information provided by the Registrar's Office.

The administrative fee of approx. 300 EUR has to be paid every semester. Doctoral students who receive a scholarship from public German funding schemes (e.g. DAAD) pay a reduced fee (by approx. 75 EUR) upon presentation of their official scholarship confirmation to the Registrar's Office when handing in their documents for enrolment.

Applicants will be informed about the status of their application approx. 6-8 weeks after the receipt of their application.

If you have any further questions, please contact Michaela Wasmuth-Kroker (, or for the IMPRS Physics of Biological and Complex Systems, Frauke Bergmann (