We strive to prepare our students for scientific independence and offer several courses that help develop scientific knowledge, critical thinking skills, scientific discourse and debate. The majority of the courses are mandatory.
The journal club takes place in the first year of our graduate programme and aims to teach critical scientific thinking skills. It provides an overview of current and seminal publications in the field of ageing research. Two faculty members chaperone each journal club session. The students are expected to participate in the literature analysis and discussions and will be graded by the faculty members during each journal club session.
Our PhD lecture series takes place in the first year of the graduate programme and covers the basic science of ageing and age-related diseases by faculty members and external speakers who are leaders in the field. The goal is to introduce key concepts of ageing research and to synchronise your knowledge in this broad research field. It is also an opportunity for discussion with the lecturers. Upon completion of the lecture series the students compose a research proposal of one lecture. This proposal contains a short summary about the current state of knowledge on the topic, an approach to the research question and a conclusion including expected results.
Publishing one’s own scientific findings and presenting them to the scientific community in internal seminars or at international meetings are essential elements of a researcher’s life. We offer comprehensive training in soft and hard skills by experienced specialists.
A unique feature of our graduate programme is career mentoring that serves to guide your individual career plan. This training over the course of three years provides you with the nuts-and-bolts expertise required for successful scientific career development including grant and CV writing, as well as techniques to communicate clearly and project self-confidence during interviews.
Scientific courses introduce our students to good laboratory practice, ethical scientific conduct and a range of scientific techniques used in our state-of-the-art core facilities. Most of these courses are offered by our faculty members. We also organize other useful trainings such as “Statistical Literacy” and “Data Analysis” and “Graphic Design”.
German courses are offered by the Albertus Magnus Graduate Center of the University of Cologne to facilitate integration of our international students in Germany.