Key Competence Seminars


Members of the Graduate School are supported by a wide range of additional seminars and workshops. Our training program in key competencies is designed to equip students with a full range of skills which will improve their effectiveness as researchers, and ensure that they are not only highly qualified but employable in a variety of careers by the end of their studies. 
Our training program has been created especially for our students and is customized to fit the typical situations and problems which occur during doctoral research. We work with highly qualified trainers and experts who have typically worked in the academic field themselves and have a wealth of practical experience.
The Graduate School’s key competence courses are open to all members of the Graduate School. No fees are charged for attending our courses. The courses are normally held in English.


Some additional remarks:

  • In addition to IGradU courses, you can also subscribe to the education programme of the university (Department III; personnel service)ProTrainU or MoMAN courses; Workshops with 8h or 2 workshops with 4-6h each can be accepted as activity.
  • Since we try to offer new workshops to improve our portfolie, we would kindly ask to evaluate the workshops to keep the high standards of IGradU.


Here you find our current courses and workshops:

First face-to-face meeting after pandemic restrictions *communication & conflict 2022*

Katja Ahmann
Tel: (+49 (0)731)-50- 36293
Room no. 425

Writing and presenting

PhD students often face the challenge to present scientific posters at meetings. The generation of adequate posters is usually not a matter of just a few hours. Special care has to be taken to adjust contents and design to a typical brief presentation in a poster session. How to make a poster attractive and scientifically correct at the same time? This is one of many questions that will be dealt with in this workshop.

Lecturer: Prof. Dr. Martin K. Wild

Preparatory Work: List with keywords (max. 30min)

Location: Villa Eberhardt

Date: June 5, 2024

Time: 9:00-17:30


Writing scientific manuscripts is rewarding but can also turn out to be a difficult task for the beginner. This interactive workshop gives assistance to Ph.D. and Master students who are facing the challenge of writing a scientific paper or a thesis.

The participants will be guided through the entire process of scientific writing, step by step. The workshop starts with the first drafts of the scientific story, deals with the generation of figures and texts, and intensively discusses the contents and logic that reviewers expect from a good manuscript. The importance of interactions with supervisors and co-authors will be pointed out and, finally, problems with writing or publishing will also be dealt with. We will develop a toolbox that makes scientific writing much more efficient and rewarding.

2-days workshop with discussions, presentations, individual and group work; feedback on texts (abstracts) written during the workshop will be given.

Lecturer: Prof. Dr. Martin K. Wild

Preparatory Work: Questionnaire and list of topics (max. 30min)

Location: Villa Eberhardt

Date: June 6-7, 2024

Time: 9:00-17:30


To attract funding for the own position or the realization of project ideas is a major basis for success in science. To be proficient and effective in the acquisition of extramural funds a well-founded knowledge of funding institutions and their funding possibilities as well as the principles of writing success promising proposals is mandatory. This includes also funding possibilities for a fellowship abroad and an international career.

In this two-day online workshop, the participants get guidelines to move strategically and effectively within the network of funding possibilities. They train, how to find the right funding agency and funding program. The participants gain insight into the principles of extramural funding, the structure of proposals for fellowships or project support and the procedures of proposal submission and evaluation. They train to write a convincing proposal. Major focus will be the title of a proposal, a strong summary, and the development of an adequate budget. Optional, participants, who are currently writing a proposal can bring their summary for analysis and further development.

Major topics of the seminar are

  • Funding institutions and their funding programs
  • Writing a success promising proposal
  • Submission & evaluation of proposals

Participants will receive a questionnaire for preparation some weeks before the seminar.

Lecturer: Dr. Wilma Simoleit

Location: online

Date: July 22 and 23, 2024

Time: 9 am - 5 pm


For many scientists writing is the most difficult part of research work. Poor structure, breakneck formulations and unclear argumentation lead to texts which are not too user friendly. However, for the success of academics it is essential that the content is successfully conveyed to the relevant target groups – from the subject community to the wider public.

The methods and instruments of scientific writing can be learnt. With a few select mechanisms for structuring and techniques for building arguments, it becomes possible to articulate even complex data clearly and comprehensibly. Coherently built up and convincingly formulated, even academic texts can be an exciting read!

Please see the detailed programme.

Lecturer: GOLIN WISSENSCHAFTSMANAGEMEN_ Jonathan Edward Griffiths PhD

Date: November 14-15, 2024

Location: Villa Eberhardt

Time: 1. day: 9:00-17:00. 2. day: 9:00 - 16:00





This course will introduce participants to methods of data retrieval and preprocessing using R and Bioconductor. Participants will use published and in-house datasets and familiarize themselves with biostatistical methods in bioinformatics and functional genomics.

Full description

Please note: you can only visit this course upon completing the Statistics and biological data analysis Basics also taught by Medhanie Mulaw.

From February 20th, 2024
Time and Venues:

Dates Venue
20.02.24, 4.30- 06.00 p.m. O27-123
05.03.24, 4.30- 06.00 p.m. H21
19.03.24, 4.30- 06.00 p.m. H21
02.04.24, 4.30- 06.00 p.m. H21
16.04.24, 4.30- 06.00 p.m. O28-1002
30.04.24, 4.30- 06.00 p.m. O28-1002
14.05.24, 4.30- 06.00 p.m. O28-1002
28.05.24, 4.30- 06.00 p.m. O28-1002

Places are limited!

Register here


In this Statistics Course you will learn the basics of statistical data analysis for your research projects. The course is application based and will empower you to improve your study planning and get more confident with your statistical analysis.

It contains the following topics:
-       Design of experiments / study design
-       Data collection and entry
-       Structure of statistical analysis
-       Significance tests
-       Choosing the appropriate statistical method
-       Paired and unpaired data
-       Level of measurement / variable type
-       Checking of assumptions and normality
-       Effect size measures
-       Sample size calculation and power analysis

The course is organized with self-learning material (short videos, handout and exercises) and two live and online Q&A sessions. After a short kick-off meeting you watch the videos and do the exercises at your own pace. Within an interval of one week we meet for two Q&A sessions online, where you can ask questions concerning the topics or your own projects.

Lecturer: Daniela Keller 

Date: 24.09./01.10./08.10.24

Times: 24.09.: 10-10.30 am; 01.+08.10.: 10-10.45 am 

Place: online

Register here


For German speaking doctoral students....

Quality requirements in the (bio-)pharmaceutical industry are very high and must be strictly adhered during production processes and testing of medicinal products. Knowledge of the guidelines and requirements of Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) represent an essential criterion for a partnership with the (bio-)pharmaceutical industry.

This online seminar, offered in cooperation with the Akademie für Wissenschaft, Wirtschaft und Technik was conceived to prepare for these specific requirements, practices and challenges.

IGradU has blocked some places for the first part and second part of the course- basic and advanced!

For further information please refer to the course website. There are no costs for the IGradU-students, unless all the blocked places are taken. In that case you still can participate using your mobility budget (please make sure, you've got enough by contacting the coordination office!).

Lecturer: Prof. Dr. Christa Schröder, Dr. Bernd Renger, Prof. Dr. Benjamin Eilts

Location: online

Date: 15. - 17. May 2024

Registration via email

The workshop intensively simulates daily business of all employees within a pharmaceutical company that contribute to a finished drug product: here Voltaren®. EU GMP guideline consists of nine chapters demanding individual requirements which must be fulfilled by different departments in order to be authorized to produce and sell this drug. It is much more than production and testing. GMP requires a solid environment that needs to be established.

Interactive part: We will split into 9 groups elaborating all GMP requirements for Voltaren®production including raw materials supply, manufacturing, quality control, quality assurance. In the end our quality team will perform an internal audit to control completeness. The workshop will effectively prepare students for jobs in pharmaceutical industry focusing on all departments involved in GMP.

Lecturer: Dr. Christian Grote-Westrick

Date: June 24, 2024 9 am-5 pm

Place: Online


The workshop illustrates all departments within pharmaceutical companies which offer interesting
positions for life scientists. What is their daily business, what can be beneficial for job preparation?
Important keywords will be addressed such as GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice), Pharma Risk Management, Process Validation and Quality Control.

Participants actively elaborate a concept for a GMP compliant drug within a fictional company, which
will be audited by participants in a simulated FDA inspection.


Lecturer: Dr. Christian Grote-Westrick

Location: Senatssaal Helmholtzstr. 16

Date: October 21, 2024

Time: 9 am - 5 pm


The workshop focuses on all aspects of pharmaceutical quality management. This area represents an entrance opportunity for life scientists into industry. Quality managers ́ daily business will be explained based on current regulations and laws which are obligatory to be implemented into industrial companies. Within the workshop several case studies will be used to offer insights into quality manager tasks and duties.

Participants will slip into the role of FDA inspectors who will evaluate gradings of real FDA findings. As is real life inspectors must justify their decisions based on current guidelines. To challenge this part, the docent will participate here and takes over the role of inspected company.


Lecturer: Dr. Christian Grote-Westrick

Location: Senatssaal Helmholtzstr. 16

Date: October 22, 2024

Time: 9 am - 5 pm


The GSP course is organized by ProTrainU. Please keep yourself informed and register via ProTrainU.  

2024 ProTrainU GSP courses will take place on

  • 08.02./09.04.2024
  • 10.04./05.06.2024
  • 06.06./23.07.2024
  • 24.07./25.09.2024
  • 26.09./10.12.2024

You can apply for a seat via the ProTrainU booking tool.

Workshops of our Core Facility MoMAN

The Core Faclity MoMAN offers the Workshop Laser Microdissection:

Laser microdissection (LMD) allows identification of target structures and cell types in their cellular context and precise dissection from the native tissue environment. The PALM MicroBeam system provides contact-free isolation and collection of high-purity cells from tissue samples or cell cultures. Isolated samples can be processed in various downstream molecular applications, e.g. qRT-PCR, Sanger and next generation sequencing, gene
expression analysis and proteomics.
The workshop organized by the Core Facility LMD addresses the basic concept and complete practical workflow of the LMD technique to ‘newcomers’ and also gives advanced users the opportunity to expand their knowledge by exchanging ideas with the staff members.

Time Schedule

The pariticpants will be divided into 3 groups:

Day 1, 15.07.2024  
09:00 – 10:00 : Introductory lecture to principles of laser microdissection (M24/4003)  
10:30 – 12:30 : Hands-on training Group1: Preparation of tissue sections (M24/4314)
12:30 – 13:00 : Lunch Break  
13:00 – 15:00 : Hands-on training

Group1: Laser Microdissection (M24/4213)

Group2: Preparation of tissue sections (M24/4314)

Day 2, 16.07.2024  
09:00 – 11:00 : Hands-on training

Group1: Postprocessing LMD samples (M24/4314)

Group2: Laser Microdissection (M24/4213)

Group3: Preparation of tissue sections (M24/4314)

11:00 – 13:00 : Hands-on training

Group2: Postprocessing LMD samples (M24/4314)

Group3: Laser Microdissection (M24/4213)

13:00 – 14:00 : Lunch Break  
14:00 – 16:00 : Hands-on training Group3: Postprocessing LMD samples (M24/4314)

Lecturer: TBA

Location: Core Facility MoMAN

Date: July 15/16, 2024


The Core Faclity Small Animal Imaging (Part of Center for Translational Imaging (MoMAN)) offers the Workshop:

Probing Neurometabolites In Vivo: A Comprehensive MRS Workshop

Embark on a captivating journey into the world of magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) with our immersive workshop, "Probing Neurometabolites In Vivo."

Join us as we explore the fascinating realm of preclinical research, uncovering the pivotal roles of accessible neuro metabolites in neuroscience. This workshop is designed to provide you with a solid foundation in MRI and MRS fundamentals. Dive into the intricacies of these cutting-edge techniques and gain practical insights that will expand your scientific horizons.  Immerse yourself in an interactive experience as we take you on an exclusive tour of our small animal imaging core facility, featuring an advanced 11.7 Tesla preclinical MR scanner. Engage in a hands-on practical session, allowing you to apply your newfound knowledge in a real-world setting. 

Uncover the mysteries of the brain, unleash your scientific curiosity, and forge new pathways of discovery. Reserve your spot now for this captivating, mind-expanding workshop!

Lecturer: Dr. Alireza Abaei

Location: Theoretical part in room (N24/155), practical part Core Facility MoMAN small animal imaging (N26/1304)

Date: 16.09.2024 (theoretical part) 17.09.2024 (practical part)

Time: 9 am - 1 pm


Career Management & Soft Skills

Since 2009 IPMA (international project management association) has been offering an international recognised certificate for project management, basic level. This Certificate demonstrates the knowledge of basic Project Management methods and terminology. It is dedicated to students and members of project teams. Since 2013 the graduate school PhD-students have been given the opportunity to get this certification in accordance with the certification body PMZert.

Further Theoretical input:

  • Communication in Projects
  • Writing a Project Charter
  • Scope definition
  • Functional, Matrix and Projectised Organization forms
  • Stakeholder Management and teambuilding
  • Further Risk Management
  • Cost planning and controlling
  • Prioritisation of Objectives and project effort
  • Documentation

Format: The course is arranged in a blended learning format.

This blended Learning format includes a self-learning period (approximately 10-15h) and 1 Project Simulation (1day) and Preparation for the exam (1day).

  • Self learning: 24/7 in Better Project Training Academy with book, check-ups and videos. Individually or in organized learning groups. Closes with entrance test for live-online days that must be passed. Questions can be asked in accompanying lunch meetings (30min) every 3-4 weeks.
  • Live-Online seminar with Project simulation to apply learned methods and exam preparation to practice for the certification.

This format combines individual and group learning for better learning results.

Technical requirements for simulation and exam preparation:

- Computer (no tablet or cell phone)
- Stable internet access with sufficient bandwidth
- if possible 2 screens for more active participation in the meetings


Lecturer: Dr. Karen Dittmann

Location: online

Date Kick-off meeting: May 2, 2024 5 pm!! (Duration: 1 hour)

Dates simulation and exam preparation: July 10-11 2024, 9am - 5 pm



Remarks: The IGradU pays the course fee only. Basic Certificate IPMA/GPM (voluntary): 150€ + VAT and a passed examination.

Doing a doctorate is a complex and long-term project. If you plan correctly, you will be ready for an expedition on the sometimes winding paths through the world of research.

An important prerequisite for a successful doctorate is a systematic approach. In addition to defining personal goals, this includes setting up a good supervisory environment, determining a suitable doctoral topic and an initial conception of the work stages. This way, the classic stumbling blocks won’t throw you off track and you can ensure lasting motivation.

Please see the detailed programme.


Lecturer: GOLIN Wissenschaftsmanagement; Dr. Simon Golin

Place: Villa Eberhardt

NEW Date: October 7, 2024

Time: 9 am - 4 pm


Starting in science there exist a great variety of career possibilities nationally and internationally, at universities, research institutions, administrations, and political organizations up to a career in industry or as entrepreneur. Which way to go? How can I develop my career goal oriented? Which strategies can I use? How can I transfer my research results or a specific technology to application and patent utilization? How can I start an entrepreneurship aside my academic career part or full time?
In this online workshop the participants get an overview about national and international career possibilities inside and outside of the academic system. The participants also look into the possibilities of a career development from science towards business. They gain insight into strategies to utilize scientific results or technologies economically. The participants work out their career choices and get guidelines to analyze their career situation, to define their professional goals and to develop strategies to achieve them effectively.

Major topics of the seminar are

  • Career possibilities – Occupational fields
  • Which way to go? Individual self-analysis
  • Strategies for career development
  • Development of an individual career plan


Lecturer: Dr. Wilma Simoleit

Location: online

Date: November 4/5, 2024

Time: 9 am - 5 pm






animal course

The "Tierforschungszentrum" is planning to again offer animal course in 2024. Those courses are in German mostly.

The costs can be refunded from the Mobility Budget of IGradU.

Ulm offers an animal course in English only sporadically. Please have a look on the webpage of  "Tierforschungszentrum" if English courses are offered.

Alternatively, you can participate in an animal course in Berlin. The costs can be refunded from the Mobility Budget of IGradU.