Study Program

The GRK1721 study program is based on a credit point-based curriculum that includes study and mentoring elements. Over the course of studies, PhD students need to earn 30 credit points for curricular activities. One credit point is equivalent to one ECTS credit and corresponds to approx. 30h workload, including preparation time. A combination of required and optional activities allows the PhD student to assemble a curriculum according to individual needs and project focus, while ensuring a sufficient breadth of knowledge in structural biology methods. In the end, the PhD student will receive a transcript for his/her records and for job applications. The main advantages of this flexible award-based system over prescribing obligatory activities are:

a) Students can design their own project-tailored qualification program.        
b) Training elements can be exchanged with collaborating programs (i.e. IMPRS-LS).
c) Overload from multiple “required” activities is avoided (e.g. host institute seminars).


The study program is composed of a compulsory introductory lecture series, advanced methods workshops that serve to give the PhD students hands-on training, one-day invited methods lectures given by GRK1721 long-term collaborators, a lab exchange program to foster interactions within GRK1721, bi-weekly meetings with progress reports and journal club, an annual winter retreat, guest scientist evening seminars, scientific communication and management courses, seminars at the hosting institute, and conferences and workshops.

weekly 1-2h each Guest Seminars / Institute Seminars / Introductory Lectures
1-2h each Journal Club/ Progress Report
yearly 2 days each                
Winter School
1-2 events 2-5 days each Advanced Methods workshop
2-3 events       
1-2 days each    
Key Skills Training