Coursework structure

Organization of Master study programs

The workload for the Master degree program is 120 ECTS credits. This corresponds to the planned study duration of four semesters.

As the scope of individual disciplines within each of the Master study programs is too large to be covered during the Master studies, each program offers several focal areas (in German: Schwerpunkte). Within the curriculum of each Master study program, these focal areas are indicated as alternative compulsory module groups; that means that you should choose one of the offered focal areas (i.e., courses offered in one of these compulsory module groups) as your major.

During your Master studies, you acquire subject-specific knowledge, skills and competencies through lectures, seminars and internships, which are offered either in the compulsory modules common for the entire Master program or exclusively in the individual focal areas. You will further learn to apply this knowledge and skills in the laboratory through lab placements; depending on the program, they are called Vertiefungsübungen, Großpraktikum, etc. You may further extend your specialization by choosing additional courses from the module of interdisciplinary subjects. Here, you may choose and combine any course offered at the University, but they should represent a sensible supplement to your specialization. The compulsory module Additional Scientific Qualifications in Biology (WZB) offers additional qualifications to complement and extend your competencies in academic English, scientific writing, presentation skills, data analysis, legal aspects, etc.

The Master thesis serves to demonstrate your ability to independetly achieve adequate standards in methodology and content when addressing a specific research question. The master's thesis should be started when you have accumulated around 45-50 ECTS in your Master program and only when any additional examinations (Auflagen) have already been completed. The Master's examination takes a form of public defense. It consists of the defense of the scientific work and an examination of your knowledge of the accompanying subject matter.

Coursework structure

The recommended paths for Master programs at the Center for Molecular Biology are shown below (prerequisites for certain individual courses are marked in red). Please note: you should choose ONE of the alternative compulsory module groups (i.e., focal areas, marked in yellow) in order to specialize in the selected subject and to deepen your theoretical and practical knowledge in the respective subject. You may complement your studies by choosing additional relevant subjects within the interdisciplinary subjects group.