Master Program Molecular und Cellular Biology

Breadcrumb Navigation


Entrance exam

If you fulfill the eligibility requirements (step 1) and you have successfully submitted your online application with the required documents (step 2) and you do not qualify for direct acceptance, you will be invited to take an entrance exam (step 3).

The entrance exam for the master’s program starting in autumn 2024 will in principle take place online and is expected to be scheduled in the first half of April 2024. Applicants will receive detailed information about the entrance exam (modalities, exact date, potential fees for proctoring) with the invitation.

As far as the content of the exam is concerned: The 90 minutes examination will be given in English. It will consist of multiple-choice questions in the area of “cell biology”, “genetics”, “human biology and genomics”, and “microbiology”. The exam questions will be at a bachelor’s level, so any relevant textbook at a bachelor’s level can help you in preparing for the exam.

Expected knowlegde

Cell Biology

  • Atoms and molecules
  • Biochemistry of proteins, carbohydrates, lipids and nucleic acids
  • Cell theory and the origin of life
  • Architecture and components of the pro- and eukaryotic cell
  • Membrane Structure
  • Transport across membranes
  • Intracellular compartments, protein sorting and membrane traffic
  • Protein quality control
  • Energy conversion (e. g. Mitochondria and chloroplasts)
  • Cell signalling, cell junctions and extracellular matrix
  • Cytoskeleton
  • Cell cycle and cell death
  • Knowledge of methods (microscopy, molecular biology, biochemistry)


  • DNA, genes and chromosomes
  • DNA Replication, recombination and repair
  • Gene expression (transcription and translation)
  • Regulation of gene expression
  • Mutations and disease
  • Knowledge of methods (sequencing, cloning, genetic engineering)


  • Specifics of prokaryotic physiology(nucleoid, processes at the cytoplasmic membrane (transport and respiratory chain), cell envelope, antibiotics)
  • Motility and taxis, cell division
  • Cultivation, growth, and differentiation
  • Energetics and catabolism under aerobic and anaerobic conditions
  • Phototrophy, chemolithotrophy
  • Phylogeny of prokaryotes
  • Chemical calculation

Human Biology

  • Human genomics
  • Human genetics and diseases
  • Stem cells and cloning
  • Epigenetics
  • Basic human physiology & anatomy
  • Basic oncology
  • Human evolution

Recommended textbooks

Alberts, Molecular Biology of the Cell (6th edition)
Lodish, Molecular Cell Biology (8th or 9th edition)
Stryer, Biochemistry (9th edition)
Lehninger, Principles of Biochemistry (7th or 8th edition)
Watson, Molecular Biology of the Gene (7th edition)
Slonczewski/Foster, Microbiology (5th edition)
Madigan/Martinko, Brock Microbiology (14th or 15th edition)
Hillis, Life: The Science of Biology (12th edition)

Please note that we unfortunately cannot provide you with sample questions.


After you have taken the entrance exam, a combined score is assigned according to your exam grade (70%) and your grade point average from your bachelor’s degree (30%). You will be invited to an interview (step 4) if your combined score is higher than 1.9 or lower than 2.4 (according to the German grading system with 1 being the best and 4 being the minimum pass grade).