Qualification Programme

The RTG-specific qualification programme encompasses different elements:

The members of the RTG participate in 3-4 hands-on lab trainings both on theoretical/computational methods as well as on experimental methods offered by members of the RTG. A list of lab trainings is provided below. The intensive lab trainings are usually offered for small groups of 2-4 doctoral or postdoctoral researchers.

Alternatively to a Hands-On Lab Training the doctoral researchers from biology or physics may choose complementary courses of the ILS Master programme selected to complement their expertise in either direction.

4 credit points will be awarded for the participation in and the offering of a hands-on lab training or the completion of a course of the ILS Master programme.


Lab Training 2017

12.07.-14.07.2017 Molecular Dynamics Simulations of Biomembrane Mimetics Böckmann
24.07.-27.07.2017 Summer School for X-ray Scattering Unruh
25.07.-26.07.2017 Bioluminescence Resonance Transfer (BRET) Schambony
05.12.-07.12.2017 Validation of protein-ligand crystal structures Muller

Lab Training 2016

24.06.2016 Workshop by Dr. Susanne Fenz (University of Würzburg) Dr. Susanne Fenz
18.07.-21.07.2016 2nd CENEM Summer School for X-ray Scattering 2016 Unruh

Lab Trainings 2015

27.07.-31.07.2015 Introduction to Python Programming Bertelshofer / Böckmann
03.08.-05.08.2015 Molecular Dynamics Simulations of Biomembranes Böckmann
01.09.-03.09.2015 Live Cell Fluorescence Microscopy: Protein targeting (XFP tagging), dynamics (FRAP, photoactivation) & interaction partners (BiFC) Dettmer / Kost
29.09.-01.10.2015 BRET (Bioluminescence Resonance Energy Transfer) based signaling assays Tschammer
06.10.-09.10.2015 X-ray scattering summer school Unruh
06.10.-09.10.2015 Electrophysiology / Patch Clamp Dietrich

Lab Trainings 2014

11.08.-15.08.2014 Introduction to Python Programming Bertelshofer / Böckmann

A bi-weekly membrane seminar provides defined settings for the presentation of progress reports, scientific discussions and exchanges between students. As a central element, guest scientists are invited for lectures. Discussions among the researchers of the RTG, the principal investi- gators, and the guest scientists will be facilitated by the offer to meet the speaker before the talk or in the regular Nachsitzung. The membrane seminars should as well be visited by the research students for an improved integration into the RTG. Participation in at least four of on average six offered membrane seminars per semester is expected (1 CP per seminar). Additionally, up to 4 CP/year may be collected by visiting other seminars, e.g. the regular Physics Colloquium.

3-days retreats are (co-)organized once a year by the doctoral researchers of the RTG (typically last weekend in November). The first day of the retreat is restricted to the doctoral researchers for internal presentations and discussion of projects. Additionally, questions regarding the organisation of the RTG, mentoring, or career advancement will be discussed. The second/third day of the retreat will be open to all members of the RTG, including postdoctoral researchers and external guest speakers selected by both the doctoral researchers and the PIs (10 CPs).

The doctoral researchers spend between two and six months in a collaborating, internationally renowned research group abroad. The aims of this qualification element are to broaden the spectrum of methods for membrane research in the RTG and thereby to strengthen the projects, to enhance the cultural and scientific horizon of the doctoral candidates and at the same time to enhance the international networking of the RTG. Group leaders of host groups will be invited as seminar guests or to the planned retreats to increase the acceptance of such stays abroad among the students. Partner labs include groups e.g. in Harvard, Oxford, Sydney, Bordeaux, Paris, Genova, or Austin.

The doctoral researcher actively participates at an international conference (poster or talk). This will train the RTG members in the presentation of own research results as well as enable them to create their own networks within the respective scientific community. The active participation in a conference will be credited with 3 CPs.

Doctoral and postdoctoral researchers are invited to propose mini-projects related to their main research topic. The mini-proposals (max. 3 pages) will be funded with a student assistant position for three months. The student assistant will be tutored by the doctoral or postdoctoral researcher. Additionally, the RTG fellow may detail additional lab costs, stays in other labs or guest stays, or small instruments. The form of the proposals should be similar to proposals addressed to the DFG. The non-personnel costs will mainly be covered by the PIs. The mini-proposals will be collected on a regular basis. The steering committee will decide over approval, improvement, or rejection. 3 credit points will be awarded for the writing of a mini-proposal or the participation in the proposal review.

  • A RTG specific Membrane Ring Lecture given by the PIs addresses current topics and methods central to the RTG. Additionally, it will be used to introduce the topics of invited guest speakers (see below) as well as to introduce into methods imparted in offered RTG-specific Hands-On Lab Trainings (5 CPs).
  • The RTG Membrane Lecture addresses basic topics related to biomembranes, i.e. biomembrane composition, organization, and membrane structure, membrane electrostatics, membrane-coupled signalling across and along membranes, and an introduction into important experimental and theoretical/computational methods in the study of membranes (5 CPs).

Soft skill courses are offered in cooperation with the FAU Graduate Centre. The Graduate Centre provides doctoral candidates and postdoctoral researchers from all subjects more than 40 workshops and courses per semester. Topics include scientific work, project management, presentation skills, communication, management and applying for third-party funding. The services offered by the Graduate Centre also focus on the personal and professional development of young researchers.

Additionally, the RTG offers specific English courses to improve the presentation skills (Presentation Skills in English) or to teach scientific writing (Writing Workshop for Doctoral Candidates). The modules are financially supported by the FAU.

In addition, RTG internal courses are offered, e.g. Presenting professionally, Intelligent conversation, or From University to Economy. Participation in a soft skill training (typically 1-3 days) is credited by 1–3 CPs.

Apart from the long research stays in foreign cooperating labs (see above), members of the RTG may visit partners also for short term stays. Moreover, RTG members could get involved in the organization of conferences or the set-up of larger research projects. RTG members are also invited to host international students, e.g. as organized by the RISE program of the DAAD. Credit points will be awarded on an individual basis by the Steering Committee.