All students who have been accepted to one of the BPC research groups to perform a doctoral thesis must participate in the BPC graduate students’ program. This program offers an intense and detailed advisory assistance and supervision and a constant training in the fields of signaling dynamics and molecular neuroscience. It aims to broaden the horizons of the doctoral students and to prepare them for their later scientific career.

The BPC study office coordinates the graduate program and helps with any questions concerning the program. It keeps the files of the doctoral students and confirms the participation in the graduate program upon completion. A certificate from the BPC will be issued along with the doctoral diploma from the faculty of medicine or pharmacy.

PhD-Day 2017 

2017 PhD-Day

This year the Institute of Pharmacology, Medical Faculty, celebrated its 150th anniversary. Together with annual PhD-Day of the BPC a Minisymposium was held with the keynote lecture given by Thomas Gudermann from Munich, followed by several exciting short talks from BPC gradschool students. Festivities continued into the evening with people getting together over food and a few beers.

PhD-Day 2016

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The first PhD Symposium at the Biochemical-Pharmacological Center (BPC) was a big success. Over the entire day at March 7, all PhD students of the BPC enthusiastically presented their projects in talks and poster sessions with lively discussions. Invited by the students, Prof. Valentin Nägerl (University of Bordeaux) shared his experiences of his career with the students and later gave a most impressive keynote lecture on super-resolution imaging of synaptic structures. The day finished in Marburg’s old town, where discussions continued over beer and food.


Thesis advisory committee

  • Within the first 8 weeks they choose in agreement with the supervising research group leader (primary supervisor, Erstgutachter) two additional scientists as advisors (thesis advisory committee = TAC). The second and third TAC members should cover relevant expertise to the student’s project and must have the status of a group leader. They can be members of the BPC or faculty members of Marburg university or external experts from academia or industry. Senior postdocs may be appointed as TAC members upon approval by the primary supervisor. One of the TAC members should be available as second supervisor of the doctoral thesis (Zweitgutachter).
  • Within the first three months of the dissertation each doctoral student writes a project proposal on the planned subject of his/her doctoral thesis, 2 to 5 pages in length (double-spaced, font size 12). This paper is submitted to the thesis advisory committee (TAC). The dates of submission are confirmed by signature and recorded in the study office.
  • At the end of the first year and then annually the student meets with the TAC members and discusses the progress of his/her project and future plans. At least two weeks before each TAC meeting the student has to submit a progress report (3-5 pages) to the TAC members. The discussion with the TAC may be combined with a research seminar. The TAC evaluates the performance and progress of the graduate student and makes recommendations about the future plans and the graduate student’s capabilities. The TAC’s comments and recommendations are documented in a written format and approved by signature of each TAC member.


Lab rotations

All students have to perform two rotations in laboratories of other BPC researchers during the graduate program. Rotations can be performed in non-BPC labs if agreed by the TAC. The goal of the 4-6 week rotation is to acquire in depth knowledge of state-of-the art technologies not available in the thesis lab. Successful completion of the rotation should be documented by a written protocol.


Internal Seminars

Each graduate student will present his/her project results at least anually within the BPC internal seminar series.

External Seminars

Attendance to lectures from international scientists within the BPC external seminar series is mandatory for members of the graduate program.

Lecture Series “Signaling dynamics and molecular neuroscience”

This annual lecture series given by the principal investigators of the BPC will cover theoretical and experimental aspects from the different disciplines present in the BPC, thereby greatly expanding the scientific horizon oft he graduate students. Attendance is mandatory for members of the program.

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Coordinator: Thomas Worzfeld

Tel. +49(0)6421 28-65005



Co-Coordinator: Jens Kockskämper

Tel. +49(0)6421 28-25336