Graduate School IMPRS-Mic

Since 2003 the International Max Planck Research School "Principles of Microbial Life: From molecules to cells, from cells to interactions" (former name IMPRS for Environmental, Cellular and Molecular Microbiology), IMPRS-Mic, offers an international PhD programme with excellent research opportunities for outstanding young scientists from all over the world. The programme provides interdisciplinary training in modern microbiology, state-of-the-art research facilities, and mentoring by world class scientists. As an IMPRS student you will be given the freedom to embark on your scientific journey!

The school is a close collaboration between the Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology and the Philipps-Universität Marburg. Research projects can be undertaken in laboratories at the Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology, the LOEWE Center for Synthetic Microbiology (SYNMIKRO), or the Philipps-Universität Marburg. The PhD will be awarded by the Philipps-Universität Marburg.

IMPRS Selection Symposium

Personal on-site interviews are scheduled for April each year as a part of a selection symposium. During this three-day symposium, applicants present a research project that they conducted as part of their academic training and faculty members give an overview on available PhD projects in their groups. Applicants have the opportunity to meet current IMPRS students to learn more about their research and their experiences with the IMPRS-Mic programme. Finally, applicants will have the opportunity to talk with selected IMPRS faculty members of their interest.


  • Day 1: Arrival to Welcome Hotel Marburg
  • Day 2: 10-min presentations of the IMPRS faculty, lunch with IMPRS students, 10-min presentations of candidates, dinner with faculty, and Q&A session with IMPRS Coordinator and students
  • Day 3: 10-min presentations of candidates, lunch with IMPRS faculty, panel interviews of candidates (15 min), visits to labs, dinner with faculty and students (location TBA)
  • Day 4: visits to lab and personal interviews (30 min)
  • Day 5: Departure

Following the selection symposium, the admissions committee will select successful applicants based on the judgment of all IMPRS faculty members regarding the applicant's performance during the selection symposium. Applicants will be notified within one week after the symposium about the outcome of the selection.

The IMPRS teaching programme starts in October each year, but upon agreement with the respective supervisor students who have been accepted into the programme may decide to start their research project earlier.

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