The Department of Biology of the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences at the University of Cologne represents an internationally cooperating research focus in the field of molecular life sciences. Amongst others this is reflected in the two Clusters of Excellence "Cluster of Excellence on Cellular Stress Responses in Aging-Associated Diseases" (CECAD) and "Cluster of Excellence on Plant Sciences - from complex traits towards synthetic modules" (CEPLAS), three special research areas (SFB 1218, 1403 and 1451), the internationally oriented graduate education, the Center for Molecular Medicine (CMMC) and the "Cologne Center for Genomics" (CCG). In its guidelines, the University of Cologne has designated "Life Sciences" as a priority.
Within the framework of the study of biology, biological research is closely linked to academic teaching. In addition to the undergraduate degree Bachelor of Science, an advanced English-language Master of Science in Biological Sciences is offered, in which one can specialise in various sub-disciplines. The range of courses in biology is supplemented by interdisciplinary Master's programmes in Environmental Sciences (IMES) and Neurosciences. In addition to the above-mentioned programmes, the modular Bachelor of Arts and Master of Education programmes are offered for the teaching profession at grammar schools and comprehensive schools and at vocational colleges.
A "Research-track" Master's/Doctoral programme for excellent students is supported by the Master's programme and the Graduate School of Biological Sciences (GSfBS). The scientific basis of the programme, which focuses on the functional analysis of biological processes, is broad and offers students training opportunities in areas ranging from ecology and evolution to molecular genetics or physiology and including all major microbial, plant and animal model systems.