Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is the IMPRS-TP?
  2. What are the requirements for applying to the IMPRS-TP?
  3. What English proficiency skills are required?
  4. How can I apply?
  5. When can I apply?
  6. Are there any tuition fees associated with the participation in the IMPRS-TP PhD Program?
  7. Are the IMPRS-TP students supported financially?
  8. I have a medical degree - Can I apply to the IMPRS-TP?
  9. Where do I find a full list of IMPRS-TP faculty members?
  10. I am currently studying abroad and cannot access some of the documents required for the application process. May I hand in the missing documents at a later stage?
  11. What information should I provide for the first essay of the online application (Letter of motivation for your application)?
  12. What information should I provide for the second essay of the online application (Overview Research Experience)?
  13. Is it mandatory to upload an application photo?
  14. May I choose a research group for my PhD project which is not listed on the IMPRS-TP webpage as program participating lab?
  15. Is it mandatory to have a Thesis Advisory Committee (TAC)?
  16. My latest test of English as a foreign language is somewhat outdated. May I upload this as proof of proficiency in English all the same?
  17. Do I need to upload a separate CV during the application process?
  18. May I apply to the program while still in the process of finishing my master’s thesis?
  19. How can I be sure that the referees I have indicated have been contacted?
  20. I already have letters of recommendation. Since the referees in question have a very tight schedule, would it be possible for me to forward the letters of recommendation directly?
  21. My official documents stating my academic records are not in English or German. Do I need to provide a translation?
  22. Do I need to provide copies of original documents stating my academic records if I already uploaded translations of these documents?
  23. Do I need to provide certified translations of my academic records?
  24. My high school certificate is currently not with me. What should I do?
  25. May I edit my application once I have submitted it?
  26. Is it possible to attend the candidate interviews through a video-conference or call via Skype or Facetime rather than personally coming to Munich?
  27. Is there a second application deadline for the IMPRS-TP PhD Program?
  28. What must I do if I receive an error message while submitting the application?


1. What is the IMPRS-TP?

The IMPRS-TP (International Max-Planck Research School for Translational Psychiatry) is a structured Graduate Program that provides interdisciplinary training in molecular, cellular and systemic psychiatric research to outstanding doctoral students. The Program exposes students to a wide range of scientific questions and methods covering the areas of molecular medicine, neuroscience, psychiatry, neuroimaging, design-based stereology and clinical studies in an environment that fosters scientific excellence and collaboration. The IMPRS-TP enables its students and research clinicians to translate fundamental basic and clinical research into practical solutions for the diagnosis and treatment of people affected by psychiatric disorders such as depression, schizophrenia or mood and anxiety disorders.

2. What are the requirements for applying to the IMPRS-TP?

The IMPRS-TP currently offers two possibilities: 1. Positions for a joint Residency/ PhD training Program in the field of psychiatry and neuroscience funded by the Else-Kröner-Fresenius Foundation or 2. Positions for a traditional PhD or joint Residency/ PhD training Program in the field of psychiatry and neuroscience funded by research grants of the Principal Investigator (PI).


For the joint Residency/ PhD training Program funded by either the Foundation or research grants of the PI, applicants must have completed their Medical Degree before the deadline of the application. An international medical degree should be equivalent to the German medical degree and successful completion of exams must be comparable to the German state medical examination. Please note, neither an MBBS nor a MD-Masters fulfils this pre-requisite. However, these applicants can apply for the traditional PhD position.

For the traditional PhD training Program, applicants with a Medical degree or will complete their Master of Science degree in the same calendar year as the start of the IMPRS-TP program are invited to apply. In addition, students having a  4-year Bachelor of Science degree (or equivalent) are encouraged to apply. Please note that you need to have completed your degree by the time you start the IMPRS-TP program, but not at the time of application.

3. What English proficiency skills are required?

The IMPRS-TP PhD Program is conducted entirely in English (lectures, seminars, workshops, etc) and hence all applicants are expected to be proficient in English. Language proficiency can be shown by way of certification from standardized tests such as TOEFL or IELTS. Students with their last degree from a University in a solely English-speaking country are exempted from taking the proficiency test. However, it is highly recommended.

4. How can I apply?

Applications for the IMPRS-TP graduate program have to be submitted online through the IMPRS-TP Online Application Tool. Applications submitted by mail, email or outside of the application window will not be considered.

5. When can I apply?

2018/2019 Application window for positions available for IMPRS-TP traditional PhD and joint Residency/PhD training program in the field of psychiatry and neuroscience is now closed

  • All applications had to be submitted through our Online Application Tool.
  • Application deadline was: December 15 2018 (12:00 - noon CET).
  • Deadline for references: December 21, 2018 (12:00 - noon CET).
  • Candidates will be notified by End of January 2019.
  • Interview-days in Munich: February 27 - March 1, 2019.

Travel expenses and accommodation for the interview will be covered by IMPRS-TP, where applicable.

6. Are there any tuition fees associated with the participation in the IMPRS-TP PhD Program?

No, there are no tuition fees or other costs associated with enrollment or participation in the IMPRS-TP PhD Program.

7. Are the IMPRS-TP students supported financially?

All IMPRS-TP students will receive a salary and contract in accordance with the public sector (TV-L), provided through grants obtained by the PI. However, once accepted into the Program, students are encouraged to apply for external funding. Trainee medical doctors might receive additional financial support, depending on their expertise and responsibilities associated with their duties during their residency training. In addition, IMPRS-TP provides financial support for educational and scientific activities such as conference travel. The salary is more than sufficient to take care of living expenses in Munich.

8. I have a medical degree - Can I apply to the IMPRS-TP?

Yes. In addition to traditional PhD positions, we will offer places to medical doctors, who will be part of an integrated PhD/residence program in psychiatry. Please note that applicants for the joint Residency/ PhD training Program alone need to have a fair grasp of German language skills (C1).  Highlighting the translational facet, PhD students will receive insights into clinical aspects of disease and young medical doctors will gain PhD level research expertise while also developing their clinical skills.

9. Where do I find a full list of IMPRS-TP faculty members?

The full list of the IMPRS-TP faculty members can be accessed here.

10. I am currently studying abroad and cannot access some of the documents required for the application process. May I hand in the missing documents at a later stage?

Late document submissions can only be accepted in exceptional cases. Please contact the IMPRS-TP office to discuss the matter.

11. What information should I provide for the first essay of the online application (Letter of motivation for your application)?

Please describe in a written essay why you specifically chose to apply to the IMPRS-TP Program.

12. What information should I provide for the second essay of the online application (Overview Research Experience)?

Please describe in your own words, (not a resume in the style of a CV) your scientific skills, taking into account methodologies, techniques and subjects. This essay can include your past and your present research experience. If you are yet to start your project, please include your research plan for the project.

13. Is it mandatory to upload an application photo?

No, submission of an application photo is not mandatory.

14. May I choose a research group for my PhD project which is not listed on the IMPRS-TP webpage as program participating lab?

No, only research groups participating in the IMPRS-TP PhD program may be chosen. Please note: With the exception of the direct supervisor, members of the Thesis Advisory Committee (TAC) do not have to be affiliated with the IMPRS-TP.

15. Is it mandatory to have a Thesis Advisory Committee (TAC)?

Yes. Students are expected to plan and schedule at least one TAC meeting each year. The TAC should consist of at least three faculty members or principle investigators, including the directly supervising faculty member. At least one TAC member should come from an institution other than the institution of the direct supervisor. TAC members may also come from institutes not participating in the IMPRS-TP.

16. My latest test of English as a foreign language is somewhat outdated. May I upload this as proof of proficiency in English all the same?

Yes, please upload your latest certificate, even if it is a few years old.

17. Do I need to upload a separate CV during the application process?

No, you do not need to upload a CV. The CV will be generated based on the information you provide in the application tool.

18. May I apply to the program while still in the process of finishing my master’s thesis?

Yes, you may apply prior to having completed your degree. However, you need to have completed your degree by the time you start the IMPRS-TP program.

19. How can I be sure that the referees I have indicated have been contacted?

The referees you provide through the “Referee” section of the application tool will be contacted automatically the moment you trigger the "send email" button of the respective section in your application. Please pay particular attention to the spelling of their email address. You will receive a notification once the referee has submitted a recommendation letter on your behalf.

20. I already have letters of recommendation. Since the referees in question have a very tight schedule, would it be possible for me to forward the letters of recommendation directly?

No, we will not accept letters of recommendation submitted by applicants. The IMPRS-TP will ask the referees to submit their recommendation directly online through a link provided to them.  We also ask the referees to fill in a short evaluation form that will take very little of the referee's time.

21. My official documents stating my academic records are not in English or German. Do I need to provide a translation?

Yes, translations of your documents into English or German have to be provided. Please submit copies of both the original documents and the translated ones. The translated copies do not need to be certified at the time of applying.

22. Do I need to provide copies of original documents stating my academic records if I already uploaded translations of these documents?

Yes, please submit translations in addition to copies of your original documents.

23. Do I need to provide certified translations of my academic records?

No, translations of your academic records do not have to be certified when applying to IMPRS-TP. However, if accepted into IMPRS-TP, please be prepared to present original documents, certified copies of your academic records,  as well as certified translations prior to starting the Program.

24. My high school certificate is currently not with me. What should I do?

If you don’t have access to your high school certificate since you are living abroad, it is ok to not provide it in your application. However, if you are admitted to the Program, you will be required to show the original document.

25. May I edit my application once I have submitted it?

No, your application cannot be changed in any way once you have submitted it.

You can edit, change uploads, and save your application as many times as you wish as long as you do not press the ‘submit’ button. However, once you have formally submitted your application you are no longer allowed to amend it.

26. Is it possible to attend the candidate interviews through a video-conference or call via Skype or Facetime rather than personally coming to Munich?

No. The IMPRS-TP Admissions process requires all pre-selected candidates to attend the interview week in Munich. The IMPRS-TP will cover accommodation costs and reimburse the travel expenses for each invited candidate.

27. Is there a second application deadline for the IMPRS-TP PhD Program?

Usually, there is only one IMPRS-TP application round per year. Depending on funding availability, additional applications might be called for. Respective information will be posted on our website.

28. What must I do if I receive an error message while submitting the application?

If the error message pertains to the 2000 character essays, please make sure that you check it again. 2000 characters is approximately 300 words including spaces. If the error message pertains to any PDF document you have uploaded, please make sure that your document name does not contain any special symbols and it is not locked.

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