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Master Programmes

The Groningen Institute for Evolutionary Life Sciences participates in six Master programmes. Each of these programmes offers training in both general biology and more specific research fields. The educational programmes strongly link to the research areas studied within the institute. A master programme consists of 120 ECTS; one year of study typicaly consists of 60 ECTS.

Within the research programmes, students follow a number of specialization courses. In addition to coursework, students are expected to actively participate in the meetings and discussions within the institute as well as present a colloquium, write an essay on a subject of their choice and complete two research projects. Below you find brief outlines of the programmes. For more detailed information on admission procedures and requirements, please check the education pages linked on each programme page.



MSc Biology
MSc Biology

The Master programme Biology is for students who have a broad interest in biology and also for those who have a specific interest in science at the interface of different biology domains, such as ecology, marine biology, biomedical sciences and molecular biology. Students can focus on fundamental or applied research, or a combination of both.
This Master's programme offers a Science, Business & Policy profile for students that want to focus on the business and policy side of science, and a Research profile. The specialization option Behaviour and Neurosciences combines two specific fields of expertise in biology focusing on the factors that affect behaviour in humans and animals.



MSc Ecology and Evolution
MSc Ecology and Evolution

During the two-year Master programme Ecology and Evolution you will gain insight into the living organism in relation to its environment. Ecology and evolution are strongly interdependent: without ecology, we cannot really understand natural selection; and without evolution, we cannot really understand the properties of organisms and their interaction with the environment. Ecology and evolution are relevant for all domains of the life sciences.
The Master programme offers a Science, Business & Policy profile for students that want to focus on the business and policy side of science, and a Research profile with three specialization options:

  1. the Groningen Top Programme in Evolutionary Biology and
  2. the international Erasmus Mundus double-degree programme in Evolutionary Biology (MEME) that are both strongly research-oriented and designed to provide an optimal preparation for a subsequent PhD and eventually a career in academic research;
  3. a new MSc specialization Ecology & Conservation that educates the new generation of ecologists to contribute to understanding and solving the global ecological problems, as a scientist and practitioner in the field.


Top Programme Evolutionary Biology
Top Programme Evolutionary Biology

The Top Programme Evolutionary Biology is an internationally oriented multidisciplinary program that focuses on research questions concerning fundamental ecological and evolutionary processes. The programme offers training, both nationally and internationally, at a high level by means of specially designed courses taught by leading experts in the field. Students are selected for the programme based on their rankings and motivation to participate. It is accessible to Dutch and international students.
The Top Programme Evolutionary Biology is also offered as Erasmus Mundus programme. Please visit the special MEME website for more information.



MSc Marine Biology
MSc Marine Biology

The central theme of the two-year Master programme Marine Biology is adaptation of marine systems and organisms to a changing world through the lens of ecology, eco-physiology and evolution. Marine Resource utilization is also considered within the curriculum. The programme is taught by several research groups in Marine Biology at the University of Groningen in cooperation with the Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research (NIOZ) on Texel and in Yerseke.
The Master programme is mostly research-oriented, but also offers a Science, Business & Policy profile for students that want to focus on the business and policy side of science.



MSc Behavioural and Cognitive Neurosciences

The Research Master BCN is is an interdisciplinary programme that offers three specialization tracks:

  • Animal and Human Behaviour (B-track)
    The Behaviour track is designed for students who are familiar with the basic theoretical foundations of behavioural research. They follow the "four why's" of the evolution, function, causation and development of behaviour. This track is coordinated by the Groningen Institute for Evolutionary Life Sciences.
  • Cognitive Neuroscience and Cognitive Modelling (C-track)
    The Cognition track focuses on cognitive processing from psychological, neurological and modelling perspectives.
  • Molecular and Clinical Neuroscience (N-track)
    The Neuroscience track is designed for students interested in molecular mechanisms of brain function and of the neuropathology of disease.


MSc Biomedical Sciences

The Biomedical Sciences programme is strongly oriented towards the scientific background of health and disease and preclinical research. Students will study life processes and their abnormalities within the intact organism, in an interdisciplinary environment of basic scientific research at the faculty of science and engineering and the more medical oriented environment of the university medical center.
This Master's programme offers a Science, Business & Policy profile for students that want to focus on the business and policy side of science, and a Research profile. The programme offers one specialisation Biology of Ageing, which provides training as a researcher mainly in the field of ageing and age-related pathologies.



Questions regarding admission and associated matters should be addressed to the Education Support Centre. Questions regarding the content of the programmes should be addressed to the contact persons indicated on the websites, to your study advisor or to the supervisor you intend to work with.

Laatst gewijzigd:22 november 2017 13:52