PhD FAQs

Who can apply?

We encourage applications from highly motivated young researchers studying biology, biochemistry, chemistry, physics, pharmacology, computational science or related fields, with outstanding qualifications.

Students who qualify to be admitted into a doctorate programme according to the European Higher Education Area Legislation are eligible to apply to do their PhD research training at IRB Barcelona.

How do I get selected?

After the application deadlines, internal committees short list candidates to be invited to interview at IRB Barcelona. Offers of admission are made to the successful candidates shortly thereafter.

How does getting a degree work?

Students spend up to four years working in an IRB Barcelona research lab to complete their project. They enroll in a university of their choice, normally the University of Barcelona, the Autonomous University of Barcelona, the Polytechnic University of Catalonia, or the University Pompeu Fabra. The university, not IRB Barcelona, is the degree-granting body.

Students at IRB Barcelona receive close mentoring throughout the programme. In addition to day-to-day supervision by their thesis director, they are guided throughout the course of their studies by a 3-member Thesis Advisory Committee. Upon completion of their laboratory work, students write their thesis and defend it at their University.

What can I expect once I accept my place as a PhD student at IRB Barcelona?

Our experienced staff in the Academic Office and Human Resources Department sort out visas and provide housing advice to those relocating to Barcelona, helping to ease their transition. They also provide assistance with university enrolment for all students.

PhD activities kick off with an introductory course, followed by lab rotations, where students get a taste of the different areas of research being conducted in IRB Barcelona labs, and meet other young scientists with whom they can form lasting friendships that will stay with them throughout their time at IRB Barcelona and beyond.

Through the Footsteps Programme, newcomers are paired with second-year students who show them the ropes at IRB Barcelona, and help them get settled.