PhD Program : highlights

20 janvier 2014



Learning to communicate among scientists. Once per month, an internationally renowned neuroscientist is invited to give a seminar (in H. Gastaut thesis hall, Ground floor at INT). This seminar will be “tutored” in the sense that we will try to help students to be prepared for active participation in the seminar. For that purpose, prior to the seminar, the students have to read two articles/reviews previously suggested by the speaker. These articles should cover the seminar topic and could highlight different viewpoints. On the day of the seminar, the students will meet during lunch covered by the PhD program and discuss actively on the articles. This discussion will be chaired by one of the PhD students whose PhD is close to the seminar’s topics. Through this discussion, the students should help each others to better understand the methods, the results and the outcomes of the scientific topic covered by the seminar. Then the students will attend the seminar, which will be otherwise an entirely regular seminar open to everyone. After the seminar, the PhD students will have the opportunity to discuss with the speaker through an informal meeting. Students will be encouraged to ask as many questions as they wish and actively participate to a scientific discussion with the speaker. They should take this opportunity to strengthen their knowledge and skills in communication.


  • About 10 tutored seminar per year ( one per month).
  • Students are supposed to attend more than 15 seminars throughout their PhD cursus.
  • Students meet at noon for a lunch-discussion on the day of the seminar, at the INT.
  • Seminars are held at the INT on Fridays at 2:30 P.M.
  • Students discuss with the speaker for about one hour after the seminar. Each student is supposed to ask at least one question during that meeting
  • The neurosciences laboratories in Marseille are very much welcome to suggest speakers for the tutored seminars. The PhD program will support both travel and living costs



Completing the students’ training with frontline topics, crucial to many aspects of research in neuroscience. These courses are mandatory for the registered 1st year students and will occur in spring. These courses will strengthen the knowledge of PhD students in areas which are absolutely fundamental for researchers in Neuroscience and yet they are usually poorly integrated in the Master classes.


  • Biostatistics, Ken Knoblauch (INSERM, Lyon), March 10-11 2014
  • Computational neurosciences, Peggy Seriès (University of Edimburgh) April 3rd
  • Functional Neuroanatomy, Julie Peyronnet-Roux and Florence Cayetanot (Marseille, INT), May 2014



Completing the students’ training with high-level thematic classes.These courses are registered 1st year students and will occur in fall. The aim is to provide an occasion, both through theoretical lessons and more interactive hands-on technical sessions, to acquire advanced concepts and techniques that can immediately be useful for the students projects or even open their projects to new developments.


  • Basics in programming & analysis (1-2 days)
  • Techniques in molecular/cellular biology, Immunohistochemistry. (1/2 day)
  • Recording & interacting with brain activity. (1 day)
  • Accreditation to perform experiments and surgery on animals (1 week)



Completing the students’ training with general intersectorial knowledge and improve career perspectives. These courses are mandatory for 2nd and 3rd year PhD students. The aim is to set the ground for a broadening of the students’ understanding of the international and intersectorial opportunities of career development.


  • Basic techniques of communication
  • Career development
  • Design of grant proposals
  • Clinical research
  • Management of the innovation process : application to the biomedical field
  • Business creation


Welcome Day

Presenting the program to all registered 1st year students but also gather together all PhD students (not only 1st year) and all people actively involved in the program to meet and discuss in an informal atmosphere. A flash presentation of the project (3min) of all 1for every 1st year PhD students will be followed by short presentations on ethics in animal and human research.

PhD Day

Learning to organize and coordinate scientific events PhD students are solicited to become proactive and organize this annual key scientific event by themselves o. They will select a frontline topic ans schedule the talks of international speakers and their PhD presentations. They will also take care of the logistics and chair the meeting.


The thesis monitoring will consist in two events

  • • First action will occur at the very beginning of the PhD. The student, together with his PhD advisor, will write a brief description of the project and its expected outcomes (max. 2 pages) : project summary, aims, materials/methods. Importantly, this document should include the expected schedule with milestones.
  • • The PhD thesis follow-up, performed by a specific committee, will be based on two major reviews. Please note that the PhD committee includes an external reviewer. It is suggested that he/she acts as a reviewer for the PhD report

- The first one will take place 6-12 months after the beginning of the PhD study and will assess the relationships between teammates, resource availability, risks and feasibility of the project. - The second meeting will be organized 18-24 months after the beginning of the PhD study and will assess the main results obtained. The student will indicate the publication perspectives.

See the details of the thesis monitoring

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