BioInterfaces International Graduate School

Selection of Students and Admission to the Research School: Applications for BIF-IGS

Thank you for your interest in the BioInterfaces International Graduate School (BIF-IGS).

Applicants must hold a university degree that can be accepted by the partner universities for registration as a graduate student.

In BIF-IGS we use a three step application process. As a first step you need to register. We will review your registration based on the information you provide and contact you with further questions and information.

If you want to apply , please register here.
If you are already registered, please login here.
For applications during the year (independend of our portal) please contact the BIF-IGS Management. Please find below the documents that are needed for an application.


STEP1 on-line registration

Applications are made on-line, and should include the following: academic records, CV, proof of English language ability, statement of purpose/motivation for the application and two letters of reference (for details see below/ read more). The candidate may select up to three PhD projects outlined on the website.
During an open call, applications per email or mail will not be considered.

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 start of the PhD.
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.
4. Statement of Purpose
Write a statement (+/- 500 words) describing why you wish to become a member of the BioInterfaces Research School, your preparation for this field of study and your future career plans. Describe the area you find most interesting, your previous research experience, and other aspects of your background and interests which may aid the Graduate Committee Assembly in evaluating your aptitude and motivation for the programme. Applicants may also indicate their preferred research group or project. This is not a predetermination for the applicant nor for the research group mentioned but is intended to direct the selection of putative research groups to be involved in the selection process resulting in broadening the targeted potential research area.
5. Two Letters of reference 6. Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Scores (optional)
The scores of the GRE Subject Test in fields related to the BioInterfaces Programme 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



STEP2 Selection

All complete applications that have been received by the deadline will be subjected to a multi-step evaluation. An initial assessment and pre-selection of applicants will be carried out by the PIs in the institutes selected by the candidates. We will also take advantage of the HGF offices in Beijing and Moscow to pre-assess candidates (if appropriate). Based on this pre-selection, the Graduate Committee Assembly will invite the short-listed candidates as a group for interviews.

The interviews will start with a panel interview to evaluate the general scientific knowledge and intellectual capacity of the candidate. This panel consists of PI representatives from all institutes. This will be followed by one-to-one interviews with the potential PhD supervisors from the institutes selected by the candidate. At the end of the review process, both the candidates and the PI, will express their preferences. The Graduate Committee Assembly will then select the best matches, make the final assignment of students to PIs, and accept the selected candidates to the school. Admission letters will go out shortly after the interview process.


STEP3 Final admission

Within the first year all PhD students must complete the predoctoral introductory course of the BioInterfaces Programme. Six months after commencement, the student must also propose a ‘Thesis Advisory Committee‘ (TAC) that consists of three members including the PhD supervisor and a faculty member of one of the associated universities. Finally, within six months, the PhD student must submit a project proposal that describes the PhD project and introduces the experimental approach as planned to be undertaken. This proposal will be presented by the student, evaluated by the TAC and submitted to the Dean, who will then confirm the official standing of the student as a BioInterfaces PhD student.