University Heidelberg

Application & Admission

Your bachelor´s degree could be in biology, biochemistry, molecular biology or a related subject, but applicants with degrees in physics or chemistry are also encouraged to apply.
Applicants who wish to participate in the MCB program have to register at the Faculty of Biosciences. The faculty website provides detailed information about the application procedure.

Please make sure that you read all of the instructions mentioned on that website before applying, including the the 'how to apply' and the 'frequently asked questions' pdfs.

A couple of extra remarks:

  • Please do not send documents that you cannot easily replace since they will not be returned to you. Instead, please send copies.
  • Also please do not send any documents directly to the MCB coordinator. It is not possible to add them to your application
  • with respect to the statement why you want to study MCB: it should not exceed 500 words and you should mention which areas of biology, and which parts of the MCB program, you find most interesting. Another important component is your previous research experience, if applicable: what was the biological question and what were your results? Also mention other aspects of your background and interests which may aid the admissions committee in evaluating your aptitude and motivation for the programme. Do not waste space on quotations or vague philosophical statements! Although it is mentioned in the general information on the Faculty of Biosciences website that you can write it either in German or in English, we definitively prefer those in English.
  • All applications are considered individually, but we do not usually shortlist students with degrees in pharmacognosy or medical laboratory technology, or pharmacy degrees from outside Europe (except German University of Cairo). This is because we have found in the past that these degrees do not provide sufficient background knowledge. The only reason that we might make an exception would be if you have already had quite a lot of relevant (molecular biology) practical experience. If you have a degree in biotechnology, it should have a strong molecular biology component.

Selection of Candidates

Applications will be reviewed by a committee of scientists participating in the MCB Major. Candidates will be selected in two steps:

First step is on the basis of the documents you have send:

  • academic qualifications as stated in the application documents and statement of purpose

If this seems to fit the program, we will invite you to the second step of the selection:

  • an interview (usually beginning of May)
  • plus a multiple choice test on the day of the interview

Appropriate background knowledge is essential for you to be able to understand the lectures in the first semester. This will be tested in a multiple choice test at the interview. The test is a bit like the GRE and includes molecular biology, chemistry, biochemistry and cell biology aspects. We do not supply further information about the test, and it is by no means the only criterion that we use. We are simply looking to see if you have approximately the knowledge that is required to start with the program. Interviews are in person or, if that is not possible, by Skype. During the interview we will focus on your motivation to study here in Heidelberg, but you should also be able to tell about your research experiences so far.