During the four-semester degree course, students gain theoretical and practical knowledge in the disciplines infection biology, immunology, biotechnology and biophysics. Students also gain key competences, for example, in animal husbandry and ethics. Special emphasis is placed on methodological and conceptual skills, which are requirements for independent scientific work in a future career as a scientist. The curriculum also comprises a research practical, during which the students complete their own small research project and lay the foundation for their master’s dissertation.
During the main part of the degree course, the participating institutes and working groups provide various elective modules. This enables students to enhance their profile by setting their own areas of specialisation. Applicants require an undergraduate degree from a degree programme in biology, biochemistry, human biology or a closely related discipline, as well as English language skills at a level of at least B2 of the ‘Common European Framework of Reference for Languages’.
The degree course ‘Infection Biology and Immunology’ provides students with the opportunity to play an active role in current research projects at the University of Greifswald’s Department of Biology. The new curriculum was developed under the leadership of Prof. Dr. Sven Hammerschmidt, M.Sc. Laura Schönbrodt and M.Sc. Renata Pommerien.
The challenges posed by dangerous infectious diseases
Infectious diseases are responsible for approximately 30 percent of the world’s annual deaths. In addition to the well-known pathogens, new pathogens constantly arise or old pathogens develop new characteristics. Important examples include the increasing and alarming multidrug resistance of e.g. bacterial pathogenic agents or genome plasticity, which leads to pathogens with new or altered virulence factors. In order to fight these infections, it is immensely important to understand the pathogen and the immune or host reaction. The prevention of infectious diseases through the development of vaccines, the development of suitable diagnostics and personalised therapies, requires a detailed understanding of the pathogen-host interactions. The master’s degree course aims to teach the students the fundamentals of the pathogen-host interactions at various levels. A further objective of the master’s degree course is to foster and train translational aspects, i.e. the transfer of findings from experimental laboratory work for use in hospitals and vice versa.
‘We are excited that the new degree course has already seen a huge amount of interest. 69 online applications have been submitted [so far]. A further 32 applications have been received by post. Prospective students can apply online up until 15 July 2022 and submit their application documents in paper form by 22 July 2022,’ says academic advisor Dr. Thomas Kohler.
Contact at the University of Greifswald
Prof. Dr. Sven Hammerschmidt (Chairperson of the Examination Board)
Dr. Thomas Kohler (Academic Advisor)
Interfaculty Institute of Genetics and Functional Genomics