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The MD-PhD Program enables medical students and graduates (in addition to their regular degree in medicine, dentistry, or veterinary medicine) to gain a basic natural science education which allows them to conduct regular doctoral studies at the Science Faculty of UZH, without previously attaining an MSc degree in natural science. The program serves as an entry point for medical students and graduates into the Life Science Zurich Graduate School. The role of the MD-PhD program is to select eligible candidates and to coordinate their integrated science education. The program consists of original research (doctoral thesis) as well as of curricular content (propaedeutic studies).
The MD-PhD is oriented exclusively toward Master students and graduates of degree courses in human medicine, veterinary medicine or dentistry. The MD-PhD program can be entered as MD-PhD Track I in parallel to the medical Master studies at UZH. Applicants to the Track II program must hold a Master's degree from a university in human medicine, veterinary medicine or dentistry.
The MD-PhD program is supervised by an Interfaculty steering committee (IMPK), which consists of representatives of the Faculty of Science, the Faculty of Medicine, and the Vetsuisse Faculty.
Track I: The Track I MD-PhD program is open to students who are enrolled in a medical Master program at UZH, with at least good grades during their Bachelor studies.
Track II: Students who have earned at least a Master’s degree in human medicine, veterinary medicine or dentistry. We recommend that candidates enter the program no later than three years after completing their medical degree. Admission of applicants from outside Europe is subject to the recognition of their degree by the Admission Office of UZH.
Graduates of other fields such as biology, pharmacy, or biochemistry are not admitted.
In addition to fulfilling the requirements of the regular doctoral studies at the Science Faculty, MD-PhD students are required to earn additional ECTS credit points in the framework of the MD-PhD propaedeutic studies.
Track I: The propaedeutic studies are entered in parallel to the medical Master studies at UZH. The doctoral dissertation is conducted after earning the medical Master degree.
Track II: Both propaedeutic studies and doctoral dissertation are conducted after attaining a medical Master degree (human medicine, veterinary medicine, dentistry).
The doctoral dissertation must be carried out in one of the research groups of UZH affiliated to the Life Science Zurich Graduate School. Students must endeavor independently to secure a position in a host laboratory.
Study guide and curriculum
The study guides for students and supervisors as well as the curriculum of the propaedeutic studies can be downloaded on the right.
3 years minimum
Dr. sc. nat.
The doctorate is conducted in the frame of one of the PhD programs of the Life Science Graduate School (MNF).
Regulations: https://www.mnf.uzh.ch/de/studium/reglemente/phd.html (in German)
Medical doctorate degrees (Dr. med., Dr. med. dent., Dr. med. vet.) are not awarded in the framework of the MD-PhD program. They have to be obtained separately from the respective faculties.
Interfaculty MD-PhD committee IMPK
The MD-PhD program is supervised by an Interfaculty steering committee (IMPK), which consist of representatives of the Faculty of Science, the Faculty of Medicine, and the Vetsuisse Faculty.
The responsibilities of the IMPK include:
- Supervision and coordination of the MD-PhD program
- Supervision and coordination of the MSc Medical Biology program
- National MD-PhD program (scholarships): Shortlisting of candidates to be evaluated and interviewed by a national expert committee for potential funding. Students accepted into the following PhD programs are eligible to apply:
- MD-PhD program
- Clinical Science
- Biomedical Ethics & Law
- Epidemiology and Biostatistics
- Prof. Dr. Adriano Aguzzi (President, supervision MD-PhD)
- Prof. Dr. Alexandra Trkola (Vice President, supervision MSc Medical Biology)
- Prof. Dr. Felix Beuschlein
- Prof. Dr. Urs Greber
- Prof. Dr. Johannes Loffing
- Prof. Dr. Anne Müller
- Prof. Dr. Christian Münz
- Prof. Dr. Hanspeter Nägeli (Vetsuisse representative)
- Prof. Dr. Nikola Biller-Andorno (representative for Biomedical Ethics & Law)
- Prof. Dr. Milo Puhan (representative for Epidemiologie und Biostatistik)
- Prof. Dr. Beatrix Latal (representative for Clinical Science)