Who is eligible?

Anyone who has a Master’s degree or the equivalent of one and a passion for Neuroscience. If you aren’t sure if your Master’s degree is considered at a high enough level, please contact the administrator sending a copy of your diploma and transcripts.

What if I did my master’s in a subject area that isn’t closely related to Neuroscience?

EDNE doctoral students come from many backgrounds.  If you show passion and potential for doing a PhD in Neuroscience and lack the necessary background, you will be asked to take one or two Master’s level courses in Neuroscience to fill that gap at the beginning of your PhD.

What if I haven’t finished my Master’s degree yet.  Can I still apply?

Yes!  If you apply while you are finishing your Master’s degree, then you will need to upload a certificate from your University stating that you are a Master’s student and if possible give an approximate graduation date.

If you are accepted to the program, your acceptance is good for one year, meaning that you must start your PhD within one year. This gives you time to finish up your Master’s and start your PhD.

To start your PhD, we need proof from your university that you have successfully finished your Master’s.

What are my chances of being selected?

It differs every deadline.  Six weeks before the deadline, the Open Positions are posted.  You need to check out these positions and contact the lab to let them know that you are interested and planning on applying for the next deadline.  If the open position is popular creating more competition, then your chances are smaller.

In general, the success rate is close to 10%.

What if I am interested in labs that do not post a position for the deadline that I am applying for?

It is still worth while to apply but because your labs of interest aren’t hiring, your chances of being selected will be less.  Occasionally, a professor will not advertise a post but in the end may decide to hire a student if the student has the right kind of profile for the lab.

Note: It is best to always indicate in your on-line application at least one lab that is hiring.

Who is on the jury?

The jury consists of your thesis director (and co-director), an expert in the field and the jury president.

Who can be the president?

The list of presidents is found on the EDNE site.

Your mentor cannot play the role of your president.

Who can be the expert?

Discuss with your thesis director who would be an appropriate expert for your exam.  It must be someone who can play an objective role so they must not have any links to the lab and have not published with the lab in the last 5 years.

The mentor cannot be an expert but can come to the exam if the President agrees.

Date for the exam

Once you have determined your jury…..

Can I use video conferencing?

Can I get an extension?

What if I haven’t received all of my credits before the exam?

What if I fail my first attempt?

How do I sign up for courses?

First discuss with your thesis director which courses are most appropriate to compliment your background and the research the you are undertaking. If you are coming from a background that is outside of Neuroscience you will be required to fill that gap with one or two Master’s level Neuroscience courses at the beginning of your PhD.

EPFL PhD level courses – 500+ level  

If the course you need is a Doctoral course on the EPFL campus, you may sign yourself up in your student portal.

EPFL Master’s/ Bachelor courses – 300-400 level –

If the course is a lower level than a Doctoral course on the EPFL campus, the you must ask the Program Director’s permission to take the course 3 weeks before the course starts.

Use the External Course Request Form on the ENDE site.


External Course – both Master’s level or Doctoral level –

You must use the External Course Request Form to ask permission from the program director.  See above.

Who is on my jury?

Who can be the President?

Who can be an internal expert?

Who can be an external expert?

How do I reserve a room?

Can I use video conferencing

I do not feel comfortable in the lab, what should I do?

My director/co-director is leaving EPFL before I graduate.  What should I do?

2nd year Scientific Discussion

3rd and 4th year reports

Final report – Before the Oral exam