Candidates Selection and Regulations

“Doctor Philosophiae” Entrance Exams


The International School for Advanced Studies in Trieste offers post-graduate training to obtain a

“Doctor Philosophiae” (Ph.D) degree in
PhD course in Neurobiology  places available: 7 (including positions from the non-EU Candidates Selection)

The Ph.D programme lasts for three years and is based on teaching and research activities, with examinations to determine admission from one year to the next and the attainment of the Ph.D degree.

About the Entrance Exams Application

Titolo / Title Pubblicato / Published Scadenza / Expiration

Esami di Ammissione al Corso di PhD in Neurobiologia (Anno Accademico 2018-19)
06/02/2019 29/08/2019
 Neurobiology PhD Entrance Exams (Academic Year 2018-19) 06/02/2019 29/08/2019


Applications must be sent to the following address:

The Director


via Bonomea, 265

34136 Trieste


For Online Applications please go to:



Fellowships and other benefits

The School awards fellowships for 3 years, extendable for a fourth year subject to approval by the School authorities and to availability of funds.

The yearly amount of the fellowships is, at the moment, of € 15.343,28 gross (11,41% tax).


The School welcomes applications from young candidates who ae going to complete or have just complete their undergraduate studies with a strong interest in research. To be admitted to the School, candidates must be in possession of one of the following degrees by 31 October, 2019:

  • Italian laurea or laurea specialistica/magistrale in a scientific subject;
  • A University degree obtained abroad and considered equivalent to the aforementioned Italian degrees by the governing bodies of the School (i.e. M.Sc.).

Online application

An online application must be filled in and sent using the procedure available at the page by the deadlines shown in the schedule of each Ph.D course.

Candidates should upload the following documents in pdf format:

  • curriculum vitae et studiorum;
  • a certificate of University examinations taken (with marks) in Italian, English, French, German or Spanish;
  • a final degree certificate in Italian, English, French, German or Spanish;
  • If, at the time of application, candidates should not be yet in possession of a degree certificate, they can submit it at the time of the examination.

European Union candidates can submit a personal declaration instead of the aforementioned certificates.

  • a copy of the diploma thesis (if any).

Candidates will have to indicate the names and email addresses of two professors that will be asked to send a recommendation letter through the same online procedure.

A confirmation message will be sent to the candidate when he/she will complete the application process.

The candidate will then have to print out the admission request form, sign it and send it, together with a copy of an ID document (i.e. passport) by email, fax or post to the address on the form itself. The request form must reach SISSA within 8 days from the “online deadline” of each course. Late arrival of the application, for whatever reason, will not be accepted.

All necessary information about the online procedure can be found at the page

And at page 8 of the following file:

Entrance Exam

All the information about the exams can be found in the Ph.D schedules at the SISSA main website. A contribution towards documented travel expenses with the exclusion of expenses incurred using their own means of transport, of up to a maximum of 150 €, will be given to all candidates participating in the oral exam.


All students admitted to the School will receive a telegram confirming their place and fellowship. They will also be asked to be present at the School starting from November 5th 2018. Failure to do so without a valid reason will result in the loss of the place and fellowship awarded.

In order to be enrolled and to be awarded the fellowship, admitted candidates must pay a “Regional Tax” of the amount of € 120.00 - € 160.00 per year.


PhD course: Neurobiology
Session: Single
Deadline Online Procedure: 29.08.2019
Exams Dates: 25.09.2019 and 26.09.2019

Ph.D course in Neurobiology
Head of the Ph.D course: Prof. Anna Menini

Research Fields

    • Olfactory Systems and Ion Channels
    • Applied Neurophysiology and Neuropharmacology
    • Bionanotechnology
    • New Materials and Neurons


Projects available for the first year students (Academic Year 2019-2020):

- Somatosensation

- Peripheral Nervous System

- Olfactory Systems and Ion Channels

- Synaptic Neurophysiology and Neuronal Networks

- Bionanotechnology

- New Materials and Neurons

- Neurophysiology of Motor control

- Spinal networks patho-physiology and locomotion

- Interfaces to simultaneously stimulate and record signals from the spinal cord

- Computational modelling of ion channels, neurons, and networks

- Information processing and excitability in neocortical neurons

- In vitro optogenetic control of neuronal networks


Further information

Available fellowships


(including possible selected Non-EU candidates)


Academic and scientific qualifications  + oral exam

Besides the documents mentioned in the general part of the announcement, all applicants must provide a written essay in English describing their previous academic background and scientific motivations to pursue a SISSA PhD and including a short list of theses projects among those available (see above list).The essay (about 3 pages long) will be used for an initial screening of suitable candidates to be invited to the oral exam.

Evaluation of Academic Qualifications

30 points

Beginning of Courses 4 November, 2019
Access to Oral Exam minimum mark of 21/30 on Academic Qualifications
Evaluation of Oral Exam 70 points
Total Evaluation 100 points
Eligibility 70 points

 Single Session

Deadline for online submission of applications 29 August 2019
Oral Exam 25 & 26 September, 2019

Candidates admitted to the oral exam will be notified by email by 24 September.

The results of the oral exams and the final ranking will be notified by email.





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