Program 'timeline'

The online tool has been closed and applications are currently evaluated.

Successful applicants of this application round will start the program between November 2018 and January 2019.

Program elements

The program will consist of the following elements:




Different tracks of the BSIO

The Berlin School of Integrative Oncology (BSIO) offeres different tracks:

Biomedical PhD track (for graduates in natural sciences and medical students/graduates who already obtained their MD or medical graduates who were among the best of their year)

  • graduates of the biomedical PhD track will be awarded the title "Dr. rer. nat." (PhD) from either Humboldt-University or Free University Berlin

MD track (for medical students and graduates)

  • graduates of the MD track will be awarded the title "Dr. med." (MD) from the Charité - University Medicine Berlin
  • the MD track is usually a bit shorter than the PhD track (about 2 1/2 years overall) in order to allow graduate students of the MD track e.g. to continue their medical studies or their medical education)

Transdiciplinary PhD track (for graduates in social sciences or humanities [potentially in addition to a M.Sc. (or equivalent) in basic sciences])

  • graduates of the transdisciplinary PhD track will be awarded the title "Dr. rer. nat." or "Dr. phil." (both equal to the PhD) from from either Humboldt-University or Free University Berlin 

Please refer to Requirements for all necessary details.

Students of all tracks will be educated together in order to create an inspriring, interdisciplinary atmosphere of which all members of the graduate school can profit. students can equally use the graduate school's offers regarding curriculum, mentoring, coaching and extracurricular activities.


The Curriculum of the BSIO consists

a) of a mandatory lecture series of 8 lectures that cover the following topics:

  • “CancerDissect” - cell-autonomous signaling
  • “CancerInteract” - non–cell-autonomous signaling
  • “CancerModel” - quantitative assessment, mathematical modeling, and simulation of cancer-relevant processes
  • “CancerStrike” - novel therapeutic concepts

b) of further courses that can be chosen from a variety of offers (see ECTS credit points).

Some of the courses (e.g., soft skill and transferable skill courses) will be offered by the Humboldt Graduate School (HGS) and the Dahlem Research School (DRS), the umbrella institutions for all general graduate education offers of Humboldt-University and Free University.

ECTS credit points

Graduate students need to attend courses equalling

  • 30 ECTS credit points (PhD track) or
  • 25 ECTS (MD track)

during the 3 years of their graduate education (as a guidedance: lectures [held once a week for 1 semester] usually cover 1 ECTS, seminars and workshops usually cover 1,5 ECTS).

The lecture series mentioned above covers 8 ECTS credit points. The only other mandatory element of the curriculum is the bi-weekly "BSIO Inhouse Seminar" (covering 1 ECTS) which allows students to present and discuss their projects with their supervisors, other faculty members and students at least twice a year.

The other 21 credit points can be aquired by choosing courses from either other BSIO courses (seminars, workshops, discussion rounds and clinical visits within the 4 above named modules) or from the curricula of our partner institutions which the BSIO has cooperation agreements with.

Students can also obtain ECTS credit points for extracurricular activities such as summer school and conference attendance or administrative tasks such as retreat organization.

>  the majority of the curriculum will be "individually tailored" with respect to the needs of the students and their individual projects and can be developed by each student together with his or her supervision committe.

Supervision concept

Each student's project will be supported by a comprehensive supervision network. This consists of:

  • a supervision committee for each project consisting of 3 faculty members from different research fields (most likely, at least one member will have a basic sciences background and at least one member will have a clinical background)
  • the BSIO Inhouse Seminar which allows students to present and discuss their project, results and further plans with their supervisors as well as other faculty members and students
  • a supervision agreement defining milestones of the project
  • the possibility to discuss potential problems with the graduate school's ombudsman