Program in Life Sciences

Registration information for all our Life Sciences programs

General

Biology, the study of life and living organisms, is a broad and rapidly-evolving topic. Studies in recent years have given us the ability to understand the very basic processes that underlie life from the levels of the intact organism, through cells and down to the molecular and sub-molecular levels. Understanding these processes requires knowledge, tools and skills from the various fields of biology, medicine, pharmacology, bioinformatics, chemistry, physics, mathematics, and related fields. The Weizmann Institute of Science has several dozen research groups that utilize these and other approaches to understand the basis of life as we know it, combining diverse and inter-disciplinary research with the excellent infrastructure available on our campus.


Minimum academic requirements

We welcome outstanding BSc graduates who hold a BSc degree in Life Sciences from an accredited local or foreign institution of higher learning, or other certificate deemed equivalent by the Board of Studies in your field, with a GPA of at least 85 (or the equivalent). Alternatively, candidates should demonstrate that they were in the top 25% of their class average. Note: Applicants with a lower grade average than required that believe that their grade average does not represent their capabilities must should add to the application a one-page (maximum) statement or else their registration will not be considered.

Our Brain Sciences program is open to outstanding students from diverse backgrounds, including Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science, Engineering, Psychology and Life Sciences.

Note: Applicants with a lower grade average than required that believe that their grade average does not represent their capabilities should add to the application a one-page (maximum) statement explaining their capacity to succeed in the MSc track.

Please note that to register you can be in your last year of studies and do not have to hold the degree yet.

Candidates from non-Israeli universities or institutions of higher learning are required to take external evaluation examinations, at the discretion of the Board of Studies, including: GRE: Both general tests and tests in the subject you would like to study. The FGS code for GREs is 3398, and scores must be sent directly from the GRE testing center. TOEFL or IELTS: Only for candidates whose mother tongue is not English. Please note that if you are asked to indicate an institution as a score recipient, the Weizmann Institute of Science TOFEL code number is C087.


Application Process

A selected number of candidates will be invited to an interview based on academic achievements as seen by your C.V (please see attached a sample C.V. for your convenience) and recommendation letters. Letters of recommendation/reference are an extremely important and valuable tool for the committees to decide on the capacity of the applicant to succeed in our MSc program. Therefore, we strongly recommend that you supply at least 1 and up to 3 letters of reference from teachers or PIs that have a close knowledge of your scientific capacity to study and perform research (hence know you from your BSc and not from before). Please ensure that all the letters have been submitted by the registration deadline February 28. FGS will not contact your recommenders to ask for the letter, nor send reminders. It is solely your responsibility to make sure with the referees that they have sent their letters by the deadline, at which time we will no longer accept new letters.

Previous research experience is an advantage but not mandatory. Since applicants to the programs are expected to come from a highly diverse set of backgrounds, the interview committee is comprised of up to three faculty members from different fields. Each of the programs is highly selective and is limited to a small number of students.


Application timeline for all Life Sciences programs (2022)
Application forms can be submitted between November 1st and February 28th. Late applications (i.e. after the above-mentioned deadlines), are considered in special cases only.

Interview dates (2022)
Invitations for interviews will be sent out in the first two weeks of March 2022. All interviews will take place between March 20-29, 2021. Please make sure to keep these dates free as we cannot promise to interview you on other dates and this may harm your chances of acceptance

Notification of acceptance (2022)
All candidates will be notified of their acceptance status until April 12, 2021.  Please do not email with questions regarding acceptance before this date.

Open day (2022)
An open day to introduce you to the campus and our programs will take place on Friday April 29, 2022 from 09:00 until 15:00 (please save the date).


Entrance prizes
The top ten candidates that start their MSc in any of the programs of the Life Sciences at the Weizmann Institute of Science each year will be awarded our Excellence in Life Sciences Prize to the sum of NIS 15,000.


How to apply
Please fill out an online general application form. After submitting your application, you will receive an email indicating that the application was received. Within a couple of days, you will receive a second email with a UserID and a password, that gives you access to an online monitoring service where you can check the status of your application. During the application process you will be requested to choose the track to which you wish to apply.


Curriculum
Please consult the MSc Courses/Rotations requirements page under Academics.

ExCLS (Excellence Clusters in Life Sciences)

View ExCLS diagram

Biomolecular Structure and Function

This cluster focuses on the molecular and chemical basis of all Life Sciences. In this program we study the structure, function and interactions among metabolites, proteins, lipids and nucleic acids. The key defining question is what are the molecular underpinnings of biological phenomena? Important innovations over the past decade allow us to answer this fascinating question with unprecedented resolution using microscopy, crystallography, spectroscopy and computational modeling and data analysis. Building on this expanding knowledgebase, interdisciplinary approaches for designing completely new molecular and cellular systems are being developed. Among many exciting possibilities, these approaches will yield the next generation of molecular and cellular therapies, increased agricultural yields and quality, and ecologically benign approaches to generate energy.

Dynamic Cellular Architecture
The Cell Biology or “Cells” cluster will focus on the processes that govern cellular structure and function. We aim to provide you with the tools and knowledge to decipher how the smallest machines work and how they self-organize to bring about complex physiological phenomena such as cell-division, fusion, migration, senescence and death! Starting from the nucleus, these include DNA maintenance and replications, transcription and epigenetics. Followed by cytosolic processes that include the life of RNAs in the cell, translation and post translational modifications of proteins, protein quality control, degradation and signaling. We will also cover advanced organelle biology including organellar remodeling, trafficking and inter-organellar communication. 

Immunity and Infectious disease (I&I)
This specific program is designed for all students interested in the fields of immunology, microbiology, infection biology, host-pathogen and immunotherapy. The immunology curriculum offers two basic courses which cover both general and clinical immunology. Together they provide an excellent and comprehensive introduction to the key components of immune responses in health and disease. Moreover, students interested in a deeper and more specialized areas of immunology can choose multiple additional courses. The microbiology curriculum offers both basic and more advanced courses, covering several incredible microbial systems as parasites, bacteria and viruses. Our program provides learning opportunities in the basic principles of medical microbiology and infectious disease, aiming to acquire an advanced understanding in pathogenic microorganisms and the mechanisms by which they cause disease in the human body.

Development, Regeneration and Disease
Multicellular organisms are characterized by cellular diversity, specialization, and cell-cell communication. Together, these form the basis for tissue and organ architecture and function. Understanding how such complex processes are regulated is key to understanding a variety of disease states in which the capacity of cells and organs to grow, develop, and adapt is altered.
The cluster covers three main regimes that govern the life-cycle of all organisms: (1) embryonic development and specification, (2) tissue maintenance and physiology, and (3) pathology and pathophysiology. This includes topics such as stem cells, gastrulation and pattern formation, organogenesis and model systems, as well as system physiology, tumor biology, and pathology. Our syllabus is comprised of lectures courses on these topics, lab techniques required for researching this field, and seminars in which state-of-the-art research on these topics will be discussed.

Plant, Environment and Ecosystems (PEECE)
The cluster was established to provide our students with the state-of-the-art foundations to foster scientific breakthroughs in research. The PEECE will train students who are interested in the important and burning questions of our time: What is the future of climate change? How do marine and terrestrial ecosystems function? How are key elements cycled at scales from local to global? Can plants adapt to the rapid changes of the Anthropocene? We will convene periodically to discuss big and small research-related issues and share thoughts and ideas. Our diverse curriculum covers key topics in Ecology, Biogeochemistry, Plant Sciences, Marine Sciences, Environmental Microbiology, Global Change, Biodiversity and Conservation, and Atmospheric Sciences. In addition to courses given at the FGS, we will offer a selection of courses given at the next-door Hebrew University’s Faculty of Agriculture, and a few condensed courses at the Interuniversity Institute for Marine Sciences in Eilat. Together, PEECE will function as a framework for MSc students interested in making a change in a world under change.
 

The degree is awarded in the Life Sciences

Brain Sciences and Neurobiology

Neuroscience and brain research

The study of Neuroscience is viewed by many as the ultimate frontier of science. It comprises of a diverse set of approaches, from the study of genes, to the study of neurons, synapses, circuits, behavior and cognition. Neuroscience in the Weizmann Institute embraces research in all of these aspects. The Institute has a large and vibrant community of Neuroscientists, and it is one of the leading centers of Neural and Brain Research worldwide. Using an extensive range of models and state-of-the-art techniques, Neuroscientists at Weizmann strive to understand neuronal function in health and disease.

List of all Neuro related labs

The Weizmann Institute offers two competitive Integrated MSc/PhD tracks for a limited number of excellent students who aim to study Neuroscience. The programs provide inter-disciplinary and multi-disciplinary training and education for the next generation of Neuroscientists:
 

Brain Sciences track: Systems, Computational & Cognitive Neuroscience

The brain is the most complex known entity in the universe. It underlies everything that is human, including sensations, movements, emotions, memories, learning, language, planning, imagination and consciousness. As such, brain research involves a uniquely diverse set of disciplines, including Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science, Psychology, Engineering, and Biology. We welcome outstanding students from any of the above academic backgrounds to apply to this track. The track offers a wide selection of courses in the Brain Sciences, covering all aspects of brain research – from systems, behavioral and theoretical neuroscience.

About the Molecular & Cellular Neuroscience track
The molecular and cellular processes that govern the formation of the nervous system, those that are essential for its normal function, as well as the processes that promote its breakdown and degeneration in disease are at the frontier of neuroscience. The Weizmann Institute of Science has a large community of Molecular & Cellular Neuroscientists whose work focuses on precisely these topics. We welcome outstanding students from Life Sciences with strong background or interest in neuroscience to apply to this track. The program offers a wide selection of courses in the Molecular & Cellular Neuroscience, covering all aspects– from cellular processes, neurodevelopment to neurodegeneration.


The degree is awarded in the Life Sciences.

Computational and Systems Biology

Biological research is becoming increasingly dependent on computational approaches, including systems biology, genomics, big data analysis, protein design and other fields. The M.Sc. track in Computational and Systems Biology within our MSc program in the Life Sciences, offers a multidisciplinary training program for the next generation of computational biologists. The initiative is aimed at students with a background in the Life science that are interested in acquiring or expanding their computational skills and applying them to biological research, either alone or in combination with experimental approaches. Prior computational knowledge is NOT required.  Students with computational background (e.g. computer science, mathematics or physics) will also be considered.

The Weizmann Institute of Science is one of the leading centers of Computational and Systems biology worldwide, with a large and vibrant community of labs that study diverse biological areas, such as network analyses, cancer, infectious diseases, development and protein engineering. The program puts a strong emphasis on learning the principles of programming and computational data analysis, and hands on experience in applying these to the biological areas of interest of each student. We therefore welcome outstanding students from any academic background to apply to this cutting-edge training program.

This platform combines advanced and rich coursework in computational analyses, three rotations including two in computational laboratories, and thesis research that may be conducted in any computational-related laboratory at the Weizmann Institute.

More information on Computational and Systems Biology Research Groups is available here.


The degree is awarded in the Life Sciences.

Search our Life Sciences labs