Please submit your application to the program through our application portal.

The deadline for applications for associations starting October 2017 is March 15, 2017.

Required documentation

Candidates are expected to hold a Masters degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject (e.g., neuroscience, cognitive science, computer science, physics, …) and possess the required advanced mathematical background.

Applications must be uploaded through the BCCN application portal. For questions or in case of technical problems with the portal, contact: Robert Martin <graduateprograms AT bccn-berlin DOT de>

You will be required to submit the following documents:

  1. Curriculum vitae (including a list of publications, if applicable)
  2. Letter of motivation
  3. Copies of certificates and transcripts of records
  4. Proof of proficiency in English
  5. Description of Master thesis or equivalent
  6. Project proposal for future PhD work (recommended approx 1000-1500 words including bibliography). 
  7. Names of potential supervisors (candidates are strongly encouraged to contact potential supervisors and discuss potential projects with them prior to application). 
  8. Two letters of reference must be sent by the referees by email within deadline directly to: Robert Martin <graduateprograms AT bccn-berlin DOT de>. Please ask your referees to use "Reference letter for PhD applicant <your name>" as a subject line!


Successful applicants of the first round will be invited to Berlin for 2-3 days to meet their potential supervisors and present themselves to the faculty of the program by giving a short presentation and an interview. The applicants should prepare a 15 min presentation of their master or diploma thesis including a description of their motivation for the future PhD project.

Selection criteria include:

  • competence and research experience in computational neuroscience/machine learning;
  • mathematical background;
  • scientific and educational track record;
  • research interests and motivation;
  • proficiency in English.


This year no scholarships are offered directly by the training group. It is still possible to apply for association to the structured program, with funding from other sources being needed (see below).

However, the BCCN Berlin is part of the new Einstein Center for Neurosciences Berlin. The Einstein Center currently advertises PhD scholarships covering all areas of Neuroscience including Computational Neuroscience, and starting in the fall of 2017. We strongly encourage interested applicants to apply for these! The deadline is January 15, 2017!


Funded doctoral students working in the field of Computational Neuroscience are welcome to apply for association to the BCCN PhD program. Application for association is also possible outside the current application window. Please contact Robert Martin <graduateprograms AT bccn-berlin DOT de> in case the portal is closed at the time you would like to apply!


For any questions concerning the application procedure or the doctoral program, please contact the teaching coordinator Robert Martin <graduateprograms AT bccn-berlin DOT de> . For getting advice from current doctoral students and hear about their experience at the BCCN, you can contact Franziska Oschmann <oschmannfranziska AT gmail DOT com> or Jan Herding <jan DOT herding AT bccn-berlin DOT de>.


  • MSc or equivalent degree in a relevant subject (e.g., neuroscience, cognitive science, computer science, physics, …)
  • Interest in computational neuroscience
  • Strong mathematical background
  • Good command of the English language

It is allowed to apply prior to degree completion, successful applicants will be notified conditional acceptance until completion of their studies. 

We strongly advise you check whether your degree entitles you to gain a doctoral degree within Germany.