General Information

The IMPRS aims to have a high share of international students. The official language of the LIFE Research School is English. Candidates must have a proven record of academic excellence. The legal right to award a doctoral degree lies within the universities in Berlin, Ann Arbor, Charlottesville, and Zurich.


To be admitted to LIFE in Berlin students must have recently finished an M.A., Magister, or Diploma in a discipline relevant to the School's program (developmental and cognitive psychology, neuroscience, sociology, educational science, evolutionary biology, developmental and aging biology).


Students admitted to LIFE will receive a doctoral contract which will be paid according to TvöD 13 (65%).  Depending on the funding institution, a stipend-based position could also be possible. Doctoral students at the IMPRS have a fully equipped shared office and full access to the libraries of the MPI and the Berlin Universities.

Application Procedure

There are two ways to be admitted to LIFE. One is to apply directly to LIFE after fellowships are announced. Alternatively, an already active doctoral student from one of the participating universities or institutions may be recommended by a LIFE faculty member to the Steering Committee. These so-called "external" fellows are funded by their respective home institutions or other funding agencies (e.g., DFG). They fully participate in the training and all LIFE activities.

Typical Admission Schedule for LIFE Berlin




Application Deadline


November 30







Entry into LIFE


April 1 or October 1

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