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Application and Admission

2024 Call for Applications - Online Application starting 1. February!


get first-hand information about the program:

8. February: Introduction to 'MSc Molecular Biosciences'

The Faculty of Biosciences of Heidelberg University invites all interested applicants to a public online information event where the Master program and the application process will be presented.

Representatives of all Majors are there to give an overview of their specific study program and are ready to answer your individual questions, for example about their selection criteria.

Date: Thursday, 8th February 2024, 2 p.m. (Heidelberg time)

Join Zoom Meeting: over

  "Why Cancer Biology?" - presentation slides of Major Coordinator Professor Ilse Hofmann [view]



General Information

Major "Cancer Biology" is an integral part of the International Master Program "Molecular Biosciences" (MolBio) of Heidelberg University, Faculty of Biosciences.

Hence, interested candidates must follow the University application procedure, and in case of being selected by the Major Cancer Biology Selection Committee will receive admission for enrollment with Heidelberg University.


Information, Links and Legal Documents

Application and Selection

The academic program starts with the winter term (mid-October) of each year, admission is by competitive application, the online application gateway is open every year from Feb. 1 to March 15.
For details about the application and selection procedures, required documents etc., please carefully read the following University instructions and FAQs as well as the supplementary information for Major Cancer Biology applicants (see below).


Application and admission procedure of Heidelberg University

Special requirements for Major Cancer Biology applicants


Applicants to the Master Program Molecular Biosciences with a preference for Major Cancer Biology are expected to have finished, or are about to finish, their studies in the field of biosciences with excellent degrees. Their special interest in cancer biology and the DKFZ should be explained in detail in the 'Letter of Motivation' that is a required document in the application process. Further important issues in our evaluation process are the candidate's scientific basis (research experience, special scientific courses, stays abroad, relevant activities in companies), stipends & honours, description of future plans, but we also consider extracurricular activities, social engagement, etc.

If your Bachelor degree is not in the field of biosciences but, for example, medicine, pharmacy, chemistry, etc., this may not have adequately prepared you for our study program. In such cases it is especially important to document to our Selection Committee the contents of your education and whether you have taken additional courses in relevant biological subjects to catch up.
You may also have a look at the students' profiles on our websité to learn about bachelor degree subjects that have been successfully admitted to our program in the past.

Of course, we highly welcome applications from international students who all must meet the same standards of excellence during the evaluation process. The minimum degree for admission to the selection procedure is 2.4 according to the German grade system. International academic degrees, from an accredited institution of higher education, must be equivalent to a German BSc; this will be evaluated and grades will be transformed during the validation procedure by the International Relations Office of the University of Heidelberg, in accordance with the guidelines of Anabin (refer to to learn about the equivalency of your academic education and degree).

If you already hold a Master degree that would enable you to apply for a PhD program directly please consider carefully whether you really wish to apply to our program.

Please understand that we do not have the capacitiy to do pre-evaluations to decide whether a candidate's application would potentially be successful!

2024 Calendar of Application and Selection for October intake (ongoing)

Application for the 2024 intake is online-only via the heiCO application center, no original documents have to be sent to Heidelberg University by postal mail. (If applicable, authenticity of documents will be checked after admission during the enrollment period.)

You can follow the status of your application in your personal heiCO section and the overall process here:



Some of the following links will only become activated during the application/selection period
[exact dates] of the various steps will be added at the time:


Step 1: Registration with Heidelberg University Campus Online "heiCO" and submission of online application

How to prepare your application material for MSc Molecular Biosciences/Major Cancer Biology

Step 2: Screening at Heidelberg University for completeness, validation, transformation of international grades

Step 3: Evaluation and Pre-Selection within Major Cancer Biology [evaluation period: 5.-22. April]

University Admission for Master program Molecular Biosciences:

Admission letters are made available by the University of Heidelberg's academic offices via heiCO download

Cost/Tuition Fees


Application fee

University fees
All students must pay a standard fee of currently 151,05 €/semester to the student union for common facilities, administration and Studentenrat. There is no difference in fees between German, EU, and non-EU students.
The contribution consists of the following individual fees:

  • EUR 70 for Administrative costs
  • EUR 54 for Social contribution for student services (Studierendenwerk)
  • EUR 10 for the Constituted student body
  • EUR 5.05 for the complementary financing of Nextbike and theaterflatrate)

Tuition fees for international students
As of Winter semester 2017/18, tuition fees amounting to 1,500 €/semester for both Bachelor's and Master's degree programmes at higher education institutions in Baden-Württemberg, to which the University of Heidelberg belongs, have been introduced by the Ministry of Education for international students from non-EU/EEA countries and international students without a German university-entrance qualification ("Abitur") from Germany or a German school abroad.

Further information, legal definitions, exemption possibilities

Financial Support for MSc students with Major Cancer Biology

We are happy to announce that the International PhD Program of the German Cancer Research Center DKFZ is able to provide funding for a limited number (max. 4/year) of competitive MSc fellowships to outstanding applicants from all over the world, enabling them to enroll in the MSc program Molecular Biosciences with Major Cancer Biology.

The DKFZ MSc fellowships include the following benefits:

Finanical support:

Amount: approximately 11,500 € net/year
Duration of the support: 18 months
for further details and conditions see explanations and requirements as outlined on the Application Form

Associate Member status at the DKFZ International PhD Program of the German Cancer Research Center during the time of your MSc program.

This includes:
- Access to advanced training courses offered by the DKFZ PhD Program
- Access to extracurricular and extramural activities offered by the DKFZ PhD Program
- Access to DKFZ Career Service

As only a limited number of students can be supported, candidates are strongly encouraged to apply to other funding agencies, for example DAAD, in parallel!


Application Form for financial support program for students in Major Cancer Biology

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