M.Sc. Experimental and Clinical Neurosciences

University of Regensburg

Application deadline: April 30th for the following winter semester
Tuition fee:
  • € 129 / Semester (EEA)
  • € 129 / Semester (Non-EEA)
Start date: October  2015
Credits (ECTS): 120 ECTS
Duration full-time: 24 months
  • English
Delivery mode: On Campus
Educational variant: Full-time

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What is ECN?

Our aim is to establish a highly specialised, internationally competitive, graduate degree for honours students in the area of Experimental and Clinical Neurosciences (ECN). The ECN-Programme is based on an interdisciplinary scientific network with emphasis on decoding the molecular, cellular and neuroendocrine mechanisms underlying neuropsychiatric disorders. The following key research areas and methods are of central importance:

* molecular and cellular neurobiology (neuroplasticity, neurogenetics, neuronal signaling, development)
* neuro-imaging / functional magnetic resonance tomography
* behavioural and molecular neuroendocrinology (emotionality, social behaviour, cognition)
* early and adult life stress and correlation with molecular, cellular and neuroendocrine parameters in animal models and humans
* retinal function and pathology

Graduate studies take place in a complementary and competitive environment. Didactic concepts include the participation at interactive lectures, seminars, journal clubs and tutorials, training of preparation of slide presentations, posters and research proposals. The graduate students acquire experimental skills according to the research profile of the selected participating research teams, qualifications with respect to experimental design and experimental procedures, statistical data analysis, and "laboratory management" as well as data presentations.

To optimally cover subjects from relevant current areas of research, Regensburg University cooperates with guest lecturers from Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen, Max-Planck-Institute of Psychiatry (Munich), Ludwig-Maximilians-University (Munich), University Würzburg, RWTH Aachen among others.


Key Features of the International Master's Programme
The University of Regensburg offers an International Masters Programme in Experimental and Clinical Neurosciences

* Yearly admission of no more than 20 students after competitive selection procedures

* The curriculum is designed for outstanding students of biology, biochemistry, or biomedicine with a bachelor degree, or equivalent, from German or foreign universities

* Duration of the programme: 4 semesters (2.5 semesters coursework and 9 months for a scientific project to acquire the Master of Science [in Neuroscience] degree)

* Interdisciplinary and highly specialized teaching programme in experimental and clinical neurosciences

* Participation of national experts of the field in teaching courses

* Intensive supervision during seminars and in project internships

* Interdisciplinary research projects

* Active participation in a weekend seminar and one scientific conference

* Students can apply for a structured PhD Programme in Regensburg after the ECN-Programme: Regensburg International Graduate School of LIfe Sciences (RIgeL)

The ECN Programme is a registered member of the Network of European Neuroscience Schools (NENS): Federation of European Neuroscience Societies. The NENS was founded in 2003 and represents over 130 european graduate schools and programmes. Membership of NENS helps to ensure high quality standards across programmes and also provides a number of benefits for students within registered programmes including training stipends and participation in annual meetings.

Programme Features

The International Master's Programme takes place over 4 semesters. Following successful completion of coursework offered over the first 2.5 semesters, the candidate can initiate a 9-month work project to acquire the Master of Science (in Neuroscience) degree. Facilitated entrance into a PhD-programme (MD-PhD for medical students) will be made possible for candidates with an outstanding academic record in the Masters degree studies.
Features of the teaching programme include:

» Interdisciplinary studies with courses in molecular and developmental neurobiology, behavioural neuroendocrinology, neurology, psychiatry and psychology. Emphasis is given to the decoding of the molecular, cellular and neuroendocrine mechanisms underlying neuropsychiatric disorders. The following key research areas are of central importance:

* neurogenetics, neuronal-signalling cascades, neuroplasticity underlying neurodegenerative and psychiatric disorders
* behavioural neuroendocrinology, quantification of emotional, social and cognitive behaviours in animal models of neuropsychiatric disorders, correlation with molecular, cellular and neuroendocrine parameters, surgical approaches
* euro-imaging/ functional magnetic resonance tomography

» Participation of national and international specialists and educators.

» All course work and examinations in English.

Teaching concepts:Graduate studies in Experimental and Clinical Neurosciences will take place in a complementary and interdisciplinary environment. Special, interactive lectures will be accompanied by seminars, journal clubs and tutorials, in which the graduate students actively participate.Individuals will be trained in the preparation of slide presentations (Powerpoint), drafted manuscripts and research proposals.

Additional qualifications: In addition to acquiring experimental skills according to the research profile of the participating research teams, qualifications with respect to experimental design and experimental procedures, statistical data analysis, and laboratory management will be developed. In addition, students can choose from a range of special methods courses, take part in a Neuroethics seminar and also participate in softskill courses and language courses on Academic English.

During the ECN programme each student will do 3 internships in basic science or clinical labs lasting 6 to 8 weeks. The student will prepare a scientific presentation of at least one of these internships.


Applicants must hold a Bachelor degree, or equivalent, in biology or a closely related subject area. Also eligible to apply are students in the final year of their Bachelor, or equivalent, degree courses, provided that the degree will be conferred prior to the enrollment date within the MSc programme.

Applicants who are not native speakers of the English language must demonstrate English proficiency by obtaining acceptable results in an internationally recognized test (e.g., TOEFL, IELTS, APIEL, CPE). Proof of higher education in English or a residence of reasonable length in an English-speaking country may also be acceptable upon the decision of the Admissions Committee. Language skills may also be evaluated during the personal interviews of selected candidates. Applicants also need to attain a basic level of German at least during the first year, if necessary. German courses are offered at the university and part of the courses can be credited against the total of required ECTS points.

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