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We seek enthusiastic undergraduate (BSc) students to join our interdisciplinary Master to PhD Direct Track program

We seek enthusiastic undergraduate (BSc) students to join our interdisciplinary Master to PhD Direct Track program

“What, exactly, is life?", and "Can life-like processes, functions and objects be quantitatively simulated, predicted and created in the laboratory?" – Join the Max Planck School Matter to Life to explore these questions!

The Max Planck School Matter to Life (MPS MtL) offers an innovative integrated PhD program providing a highly interdisciplinary sciences education for excellent undergraduates. The program can be conducted at one of the partners of the broad MtL Network consisting of nearly 60 excellent scientists (our so-called Fellows) from top-ranking universities and renowned research institutions throughout Germany.

We offer

  • An exceptional and highly interdisciplinary graduate program directly after your Bachelor’s
  • A unique network of outstanding Fellows
  • 3-week welcome course for our first-year students and annual symposia
  • Mentoring program for the duration of the program
  • Full funding for up to five years, including a generous stipend for both international and German students as well as medical insurance support
  • All courses taught in English

The program is structed in two phases, a master phase (study phase) and a PhD phase (research phase). Within the master phase you obtain the master degree at one of our two teaching universities, depending on your choice of specialization:

  • Molecular Systems Chemistry and Engineering (Heidelberg University)
  • Complex Systems and Biological Physics (University of Göttingen)

The universities share a core curriculum with classes that are taught in state-of-the-art connected classrooms. Laboratory rotations at MtL partner institutions during the Master's phase of the program are encouraged and the students are supported in building their own research networks in this highly interdisciplinary area. All students are given a mentor to guide them through the program.

After you successfully complete the Master's program, you continue with the 3-year PhD phase under the supervision of one of the school's associated Fellows.

Who are we looking for?

Current Bachelor students with backgrounds in Chemistry, Physics, Biochemistry, Bioengineering, Materials Science, Molecular Systems Engineering, Molecular Cell Biology, or a related subject are encouraged to apply.

Application requirements (no registration fee/no GRE required):

  • Certificates/Diplomas of all higher education degrees (e.g. BSc, etc.) - if already obtained
  • Official transcripts of all completed and ongoing degrees
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Letter of motivation
  • Proof of English language proficiency in the case of non-native English-speaking applicants

For more information regarding your application to MtL, check our website:

Deadline for applications: Annually in Winter. The study program starts in the following year in September.

Please check our website for more information. Here you will also find a detailed list of FAQs on If you still have questions, please contact our main coordination office at:

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