PhD Education Program

One of the main goals of the CRC is providing an exceptional educational experience for young researchers which will prepare them for their next career steps. To achieve this, all early stage researchers (including postdoctoral researchers until two years after they finished their PhD) are members of the Integrated Research Training Group (IRTG). The IRTG promotes scientific independence, interdisciplinary training and fosters key qualifications and competencies required in today’s scientific communities. It imparts knowledge beyond the general approach of the CRC.

The IRTG program includes different activities and guidelines that are explained in more detail below.

  • At the beginning of their time in the CRC, new PhD students receive an introduction into the IRTG. In the first six months, called the Booster Phase, the students familiarize themselves with the CRC, learn how to organize their research projects and get to know their colleagues.
  • All PhD students conduct a mandatory research stays abroad of 4 to 12 weeks duration.
  • To encourage inter-CRC networking, the IRTG members take part in regular self-organized students-only workshops.
  • Every year, the IRTG members organize and participate in a summer school.
  • On regular field trips, the group visits other research facilities.
  • For IRTG members, participation in CRC events like the retreats, focus group meetings and monthly colloquium talks is mandatory.
  • To offer a wide range of professional education possibilites, our PhD students and postdocs can join several development courses.
  • To track their progress, plan their research for the next months and document their finished IRTG activities, the PhD students write a "Research and Qualification Plan" every six months. Details on how many IRTG points are awarded for each activity can be found in the credit-point list.