Since 2003, the Hannover Biomedical Research School (HBRS) has been organizing a joint curriculum for all programs (Curriculum 2016/17).
As a general rule, students have to attend 300 hours of teaching during the 3-year period. This includes three hours of obligatory seminars per week, project-related courses like, e.g., method courses, congresses, scientific colloquia (80 hours) and interdisciplinary seminars like, e.g., soft skill courses (60 hours). Students can choose from a great variety of courses, workshops, summer schools, Master classes (2-3 days discussion with 3-4 inernational outstanding scientists), etc. Please also see the individual program guidelines and the section "news and announcements".
Most important is, of course, the research project in one of the departments of MHH or partner institutes. All projects are quality-checked by the program committees. Each student has a thesis advisory committee (one main supervisor and two co-supervisors from different departments), regular meetings take place. Presentation and discussion of the project on an annual retreat should guarantee the way to success. We offer 3-year PhD programs, however, most important is the outcome (1-2 first author papers in high-ranking journals as part of a cumulative thesis are desired). So, the average length of PhD at the moment is 3.5 years.
We have an intermediate exam after 18 months. Here, you select and discuss a state-of-the-art paper in context of your own research work. The final exam is conducted in form of a public defense.
Short-time stays abroad in a lab of a cooperation partner are possible.
At the beginning, orientation weeks help new students to adapt to the new surroundings. Usually, in the first couple of weeks senior students offer to be a mentor (including "meet and greet" service at the airport).
And last but not least, a number of social and cultural events are organized by HBRS.