How to structure a career in academia: how to plan your postdoc and how to become a professor?



Course Dates

Maximum number of participants / Credit Points

Registration open

online26 November 2020
9:30 am - 4:30 pm



Science careers are demanding. But the biggest difficulty seems to be the impossibility to plan them to the end. On the other hand, there are some rules you could use to plan at least the most important steps.

In this workshop we talk about science careers in Germany in detail. The workshop will deal with the relevant steps from early postdoc to the appointment to a chair. We will address the most important career steps.

Things we talk about:

  • What is the goal in science career – how far do I have to go in different science systems?
  • What does it mean to become and to be professor in Germany?
  • Differences and similarities in USA and UK.
  • How does the so called “Berufungsverfahren” for new professors work?
  • What should I do as postdoc? How could I structure this career step?
  • What are: Juniorprofessor, Tenure-track-Professor, Habilitation and W2- or W3-Professor?
  • What are the achievements I need, like publications, 3rd-party-funding, networks etc.?
  • Which personal competencies (soft skills) do I need?
  • What are the risks and difficulties? And how could I minimize my risks?
  • What is meant by “scientific profile” and how could I develop my profile?
  • How long could I stay and when might it become difficult to change to industry and other sectors?

As supplement to this course, an individual coaching session for each participant is offered by Dr. Schwarzkopf. The individual coaching sessions will take place online on 27 November 2020.

Once you are registered to the course on 26 November 2020, the concrete time slot for the coaching session will be coordinated.


Dr Matthias Schwarzkopf

... is the cofounder of He has been counselling scientists for several years.

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