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How to apply


For Graduate and Undergraduate Students, please e-mail Chen ( with:

  • Transcripts and CVincluding your previous education, employment history, scientific experience, achievements and, if relevant, a list of publications.


For Postdoc or Research Assistant positions, please e-mail Chen ( with:

  • Cover Letter, clearly stating the applied position, concise background, motivation and research interests.

  • CVincluding your previous education, employment history, scientific experience, achievements and list of publications.

  • References, including e-mail addresses of individuals who can provide a letter of recommendation. At least three references are required for Research Assistant or Postdoc candidates.



General tips for writing your application 

(will probably be valid for applications to most other labs too)


  • In your cover letter, be concise and focus on why YOU are the perfect candidate for our lab, what makes US the perfect target lab for you and how we can work TOGETHER to convert this amazing fit into groundbreaking research.

  • Avoid generic statements in your cover letter. Instead, be specific when talking about yourself and about the target lab and try to provide objective details that you think matter. As a general guideline, try to read each sentence in your cover letter separately and ask yourself if someone else could have written it. If yes, then consider revising.

  • In your cover letter or CV, make sure to explain what was your role in key publications, especially in cases of equal-contribution authorships or co-authorship.

  • Dedicate the first line of your email and cover letter to explicitly state your intention: e.g. "I am writing to apply for the [postdoc/research assistant/PhD student/etc.] position in [cell biology/structural biology/etc.] in your lab that was advertised in [your website/CCP4 Bulletin Board/etc.] ."

  • It becomes common to see the same text of the cover letter appears also within the application email. There is no problem with that, just make sure to include the cover letter also as a PDF within the application package.

  • It is common that international applicants previously obtained country-specific or institute-specific competitive scholarships or awards that are highly prestigious nationally, but a researcher from another country might not know them. In such cases, it is worth spending a few words in the CV explaining what makes these achievements prestigious.

  • Nobody's perfect. Hence, try to identify weak points in your CV, especially points that could be seen by others as "red flags", even if there is a good explanation for them. Ideally, provide short explanations for such seemingly-weak points upfront when writing your cover letter.

  • Proofread your application, please, and ask someone experienced to read it.

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