The first year offers research-oriented courses. These courses willl give students an overview of frontier research. Courses are organized over two semesters, with exams in January and June. 

Workshops and Reading Groups

Students from all years participate on a regular basis in a reading group, in which they present and discuss advanced material, and in a workshop, in which they present progress reports on their own work. 


- Each student must take at least 12 courses by the end of the first year. In case of a fail, a student will have to take the corresponding credits in another course, either during the first or the second year

- In every year, each student should present at least 2/3 times in the reading group and at least 2/3 times in the workshop

- At the end of the first year, students should present to the faculty a paper proposal (the first chapter of the PhD thesis). The proposal, and the GPA obtained in the courses, are the basis of a formal decision concerning retention in the program and assignment of a supervisor. The decision is taken by the coordinator of the program and 2 experts on the topic of the presentation

- By the end of the second year, students should present to the faculty a paper documenting their progress, in a proper seminar. The student will be assessed, as in the point above, and in case of retention will be assigned a co-supervisor

- The subsequent years of the program are devoted to the writing of the dissertation, which should consist of at least two research papers

- During their third year, students are encouraged to spend a semester in another top department. The program, together with partner institutions, will provide funding for financing the visit

- Star students might receive additional fundings for an extra fifth year