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The "Nanobiotechnology" distance learning program (held in English)

University-based further training in the base technology of the 21st century

Nanobiotechnology is a very recent and fascinating area of activity and research, which may be called the "Fundamental Technology of the 21st Century". Several potential applications can already be identified, for example in the field of medical diagnostics and therapeutics and the development of new materials. The distance learning program, unique in Germany and offered by the DISC since 2004, caters to the highly interdisciplinary nature of nanobiotechnology.

Target group

The 12 month certificate program is aimed at people, who have already obtained a university or university of applied science (Fachhochschule) qualification in a natural science or engineering or medical subject.

The course is held entirely in English.

For the enrolment to the English-language certificate distance education program "Nanobiotechnology" a sufficient proof of English proficiency is necessary.
Here is additional information about the application process.


Upon successful completion of this distance study program the graduates have acquired skills that enable them to strongly improve products and processes in the organizations in which they operate. Thus the study program makes a contribution to the high demand for skilled workers in the field of nanobiotechnology.
The two on-campus weekends contribute to the acquisition of practical skills. This is done in the context of lab work about different characterization procedures in nanotechnology and screening methods in biology.
An important secondary objective of the distance study program is learning of working in an international environment.
The learning outcomes of this study program are:

  • Basic knowledge of fundamental concepts of quantum physics and molecular biology.

  • Insight into several applications of nanotechnology like biosensors, linear and rotary molecular motors and the employment of nanoparticles in drug delivery and diagnostics.

  • Advanced knowledge of the different characterization procedures on the nanoscale as well as of screening methods in biology.

  • Insight into synthesis processes for nanoparticles in which the essential particle formation steps are the result of physical and chemical phenomena.

  • Knowledge of the preparation of advanced materials like nanosized powders, coatings, ceramics, compacts, monoliths, and glasses.

  • Knowledge of the interaction phenomena between biological entities and non-biological substrates, of the basic concepts of biomaterials for implantation, and of nanotechnological methods that are used to improve biomaterial interactions with biological tissue.

More detailed information can be found in the preamble of the module handbook.

Schedule and organization

The standard course duration for this part-time study, including examination time, is 12 months. It is also possible to take a break during the course and then return to complete it. The lectures and exercises are provided in the form of written study materias, which were developed specifically for distance learning. A weekly commitment of around 10-18 hours is required to study the material.


On campus events

Two compulsory on campus events are held for all participants in the "Nanobiotechnology" distance learning program. These events always take place on the weekend. Their goal is to reinforce the course contents within the scope of group work and workshops, discuss questions regarding the study material and debate the practical implementation of the program content. Written examinations are also a part of these on campus weekends.


Program content

The distance learning program is made up of 11 topics, which include characterization techniques, chemical and physical synthesis of nanoparticles, processing coatings, ceramics and composites, basics of molecular biology, genetics, screening methods in biology, chip technology, nanotechnologically modified biomaterials, nanomotors, and nanoparticles for diagnostic and therapeutic applications.


Authors & modules

The course includes the following modules:

Modul / Lehrbriefe / TitelAutoren
Studieninhalte des ersten Semesters:
Fundamentals of Quantum MechanicsProf. Dr. Hans-Jürgen Korsch
Fundamentals of Molecular Biology, GeneticsDr. Peter Reichmann
Dr. Angelika Roth
Nanoparticles as Therapeutic Drug Carrier and DiagnosticsProf. Dr. Claus-Michael Lehr
M. N. V. Ravi Kumar, PhD
Prof. Dr. Udo Bakowsky
Molecular Nanosystems: Sensors and Molecular MotorsProf. Dr. Christiane Ziegler
Prof. Pia Vogel, PhD
Characterization of NanostructuresProf. Dr. Christiane Ziegler
Dr. Christine Müller-Renno
Screening Methods in Biology, Chip TechnologiesProf. Dr. Roland Ulber
Dr. Frank Stahl
Studieninhalte des zweiten Semesters:
Physical and Chemical Synthesis of NanoparticlesProf. Dr. Frank Einar Kruis
Processing Coatings and Their ApplicationsDr. Stefan Goedicke
Dr. Frank Groß
Dr. Nora Kunze
Dr. Stefan Sepeur
Processing Ceramics and Composites and Their ApplicationsProf. Dr. Rolf Clasen
Interactions between Biological and Non-Biological DevicesDr. Axel Blau
Nanotechnologically Modified Biomaterials

Prof. Dr. Eva Eisenbarth

Further informations can be found in our module handbook.



Assignments are to be sent in and examinations taken over the course of the study program. Once all assignments and examinations have been completed, the program is concluded with a graded certificate from the Technische Universität Kaiserslautern.



The study fees for the distance learning program "Nanotechnology" are 820 Euro per semester. In addition one has to pay a social contribution of 102 Euro per semester. Starting from the third semester over the regular study time of two semesters, a reduced fee of 30 % of the semester fee is levied. These tuition fees cover all costs for teaching material, participation in the on campus events, term exams, and all administrative expenses. However, they do not include any travel, accommodation, or meal expenses for the on campus weekends. Furthermore, you can also use our online learning environment to commission one of our printing service providers. For a surcharge, they will print, bind and send you the available learning materials (print on- demand). The tuition fees are exempted from German VAT and are tax-deductible.


Financial Aid

The government can support you in financing your studies with individual tax incentives. Based on your personal rate of taxation and your professional situation, you can, for example, offset the costs as professional or special expenses. Please get in touch with your local revenue office or tax advisor for more information on this. In certain circumstances, the German government can also support you in your professional training with so-called training and qualification cheques (Bildungs- und Qualifizierungschecks). You can find information on this on the internet, for example at www.bildungspraemie.info.

Employers are often also willing to contribute to the costs of training for their workforce. And low-interest bank loans geared specifically to funding training courses and offered by the government and by banks, such as the KfW Development Bank, represent another good option. However, financial support as per the rules of Germany's Social Security Code (SGB III) or Federal Education and Training Assistance Act (BAföG) is not possible, unfortunately.



You can apply for the "Nanobiotechnology" distance learning program from mid-May to mid-July of the respective year. Courses start at the beginning of October. The application deadlines can be found here.