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PhD curriculum

PhD program UN094

An overview of the most important details

Language of Instruction

6 Semester (180 ECTS)
Graduate: PhD

Deciplines and supervisors
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The Structure of the Ph.D. programs at MedUni Vienna.


The propedeutics are an important part of the programme. They have to be completed by the end of the fourth semester and comprise a choice of ground breaking medical and basic courses, of which six semester hours are obligatory.

One semester hour is mandatory in each of the following topics:

  • "Ethic and Good Scientific Practice" and
  • "Project Management and Intellectual Property Rights".

Selectable courses:

  • Medical Propedeutics - Anatomy and Physiology 2 SWSt *
  • Medical Propedeutics - Linking Biology and Diseases 2 SWSt *
  • Molecular and Cell Biology for Medics 2 SWSt
  • Methods of Life Sciences 2 SWSt
  • Methods in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry 2 SWSt
  • Medical Biostatistics I 2 SWSt
  • Medical Biostatistics II 2 SWSt
  • Scientific Software and Databases 2 SWSt
  • Preparatory Course Medical Biostatistics 1 SWSt
  • Introduction to Medical Imaging and Biomedical Engineering 2 SWSt
  • Experimental Biomedical Studies in Animals 3 SWSt
  • BenchPress. A guide to scientific writing beginning at the worktable 1 SWSt
  • Basic Data Literacy for Aspiring Life Scientists 2 SWSt
  • Cardiovascular in vitro and vivo techniques 3 SWSt
  • Statistical planning and analysis of animal experiments 2 SWSt

We recommend that you discuss the selection of the preparatory courses with your supervisor and program coordinator in order to ensable the best fit for your personal PhD training. The propedeutics courses are chosen and approved with the thesis registration form. By the end of the second semester, you need to send  the completed thesis registration and  thesis proposal to the study department.

Please note that students who have not completed a degree in human medicine need to enroll to at least one of the two * Medical Propedeutics. Students who have completed a degree in human medicine are not allowed to choose  any medical propedeutics.

Basic lectures will provide you with a broad knowledge of the research area of one particular thematic program.

We recomment that you discuss with your program coordinator which basic lectures are best suited for your training. The course instructore decides on the form of  assessment of the basic lecture which can be a written or an oral exam. Dates are often coordinated individually, so please inform yourself with  the lecturer about the exact organizational process.

Overall, you need complete following courses during your PhD studies:

4 hours per week in the Basic Course

6 hours per week of Propaedeutics / Propedeutics

8 hours per week of the thesis seminar / seminar for doctoral candidates

12 hours per week in the Journal Club

attending one YSA-Symposium

Courses can be looked up and booked in the MedCampus system. A brief description of the respective course types as well as a study plan suggestion can be found below.

All courses, except the basic courses, take place every semester.

The teaching content of the journal clubs is the critical reading and discussion of current subject-relevant literature in the group. Our journal clubs thrive on interaction and therefore focus on the dialogue between all participants. It is the prefect setting to work on and  improve your communication and negotiation skills. Journal clubs usually take place once a week.

The journal clubs can also be chosen across programs, some JCs explicitly deal with topics that are important for all doctoral students, for example how to write a thesis proposal.

The thesis seminar is professionally steering your research work while writing your thesis paper.  This course is characterized by its lively interaction between students and supervisors, nevertheless the focus of the course is on team communication and work. Problems (such as project planning, scientific methodology, data interpretation or publication) with your own thesis can be discussed and solved within the team. It is common practise to present your thesis concept and discuss the current state of your research work and thesis paper. Each thematic program offers its own seminar, therefore for more detailed information, please contact the secretariat of your program coordinator.

The YSA Colloquium is a twice-yearly event organised by the Young Scientist Association of the Medical University of Vienna. The Colloquium aims to bring together PhD students and give them the opportunity to network across the wide range of scientific fields that are represented at the MedUni Vienna.

The YSA Colloquium offers you the opportunity to present your research in the form of a poster or talk to both your fellow students and more experienced researchers. If you would like to gain experience in the field of congress or event plannin, you can become an active member of the YSA.

Each YSA Colloquium consists of a keynote lecture and several external guest lectures. In addition, the YSA awards prizes for the best oral and poster presentations by graduate students at the Science Party.

For those students who have enrolled after the winter semester of 2019, it is mandatory to attend at least for once a YSA symposium. We recommend every student to attend the event yearly, as its a great opportunity to network and exchange knowledge with other scientists.

Timeline Proposal of Courses and Propedeutics

1st Semester Semester hours ECTS Credits
Propedeutics     4 4
Basic Course 2 2
Journal Club 2


2nd Semester Semester hours ECTS Credits
Propedeutics     2 2
Basic Course 2 2
Journal Club 2


Thesis Registration - 10
3rd Semester Semester hours ECTS Credits
Journal Course 2 3
Thesis Seminar 2 3
4th Semester Semester hours ECTS Credits
Journal Club 2 3
Thesis Seminar 2 3
YSA-Symposium - 6
5th Semester Semester hours ECTS Credits
Journal Club 2 3
Thesis Seminar 2 3
6th Semester Semester hours ECTS Credits
Journal Club 2 3
Thesis Seminar 2 3
  Semester hours ECTS Credits
Doctoral Thesis   124
Sum 30 180
Curriculum (PDF, 169KB)
Curriculum EN 15.02.2023