Practical Research Experience Program (PREP)

Research project at TUM (Image: Eckert/TUM)
Research project at TUM (Image: Eckert/TUM)

Excellent North American students are invited to apply for the TUM Practical Research Experience Program (PREP), an 11-week program that runs over the course of the summer. Participating in a research project under the supervision of a TUM faculty member, PREP participants will build up and further refine their research skills, learn more about the specifics of the German higher education and research landscape, and become members of the diverse scientific community at Germany's top-ranked technical university.

TUM PREP applicants demonstrate outstanding academic achievements, can easily adapt to new environments and are driven by a general curiosity for science and research. During their stay and beyond, program participants serve as ambassadors for their home institutions and for TUM, respectively, and will contribute to the strengthening of international research networks. 

TUM International Center will arrange accommodation for all program participants, and award scholarships to students in need of financial support. An orientation event as well as cultural program will ensure that program participants are well integrated into the local student body, and will have a chance to immerse themselves in the unique cultural and economic environment of Munich and Bavaria, respectively.

Available Projects 2017

The application deadline for projects in the summer of 2017 has passed. Projects for the summer of 2018 will likely be published in August 2017. 

Program Dates 2017

OrientationMay 29, 2017 (tentatively)
ProjectsMay 29 – August 11, 2017
Final EventAugust 11, 2017


Applicants must be enrolled at one of the following institutions in the U.S. or Canada in order to be eligible for PREP:

California Institute of Technology I Carnegie Mellon University I Columbia University I Cornell University I Duke University I Georgia Institute of Technology I Harvard University I Johns Hopkins University I McGill University I McMaster University I Michigan State University I MIT I New York University I Northwestern University I Princeton University I Purdue University I Rutgers. The State University of New Jersey I Stanford University I Université de Montréal I UC Berkeley I UC Davis I UC Irvine I UC Los Angeles I UC San Diego I UC San Francisco I  UC Santa Barbara I University of Chicago I University of Colorado at Boulder I University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign I University of Maryland at College Park I University of Alberta I University of British Columbia I University of Michigan I University of Minnesota I University of North Carolina I University of Pennsylvania I University of Pittsburgh I University of Southern California I University of Texas at Austin I University of Toronto I University of Washington I University of Wisconsin Madison I VirginiaTech I Washington University at St. Louis I Yale University 

Academic Prerequisites:

Applicants must meet the following application criteria:

  • Two years of study completed (by the time of arrival to TUM)
  • GPA minimum: 3.0
  • Project-specific skills as mentioned in project descriptions

No German language proficiency is required to participate in the program. Applicants are expected to be aware of recognition and credit transfer regulations at their home institutions. 

Services Provided by TUM

TUM will provide the following services to program participants:

  • Accommodation:
    TUM will offer a dorm room to all program participants.
  • Administrative Support:
    TUM International Center will act as single point of contact for program participants.
  • Cultural Program:
    Program participants may participate in the activities organized by TUMi, TUM's cultural immersion program for international students. Moreover, TUM International Center will devise special activities and events designed for TUM PREP students only, e.g. industry visits and networking events.
  • Orientation:
    TUM PREP participants will be invited to a special orientation event at the beginning of their stay in Munich.
  • Scholarship:
    Students not otherwise supported for their participation in PREP will receive a TUM scholarship (1,500.00€, paid in three rates).

Cost Estimates

PREP participants should calculate with the following total expenses for their three-month-stay in Munich, though individual figures will vary with regard to personal spending habits (expenses related to travel, visa and (mandatory) health insurance not included):

One-time Expenses (to be paid before arrival)

Enrolment Fee (includes public transportation ticket)~300.00€
Dorm Room Security Deposit (will be refunded!)~500.00€
Travel Expenses and Visa Fees                                             

Other Expenses (3-month-totals)

Living Expenses~1,500.00€
Total (w/o TUM scholarship and insurance)~3,300.00€
Total (w/o insurance**)~1,800.00€ (~600€/month)

*TUM will support all program participants not receiving a scholarship/grant or financial aid directly related to their participation in TUM PREP.
**Students must obtain health coverage in Germany. It is highly recommended that students have sufficient liability insurance coverage.

Application Procedure, Application Deadline and Admission

Application Procedure:

Students should apply via our online application platform.

Some partner institutions may pre-select and then nominate students for participation in PREP, students from these institutions should inquire with the unit in charge of international mobility programs regarding the application procedure. 

Institutions pre-selecting and nominating students are:

  • The University of Alberta (Contact: Ciara Murrin, International Internship Coordinator)

Application Deadline:

December 1, 2016.

Selection of Projects and Placement:

Students applying for a specific project will have a chance to name another as their second choice in the online application platform. Applications will be assessed in close cooperation with project supervisors, taking into account the applicant’s academic credentials and motivation as well as the intensity of engagement between TUM and the sending (partner) institution.

Admission Letters:

Admission to the program will be highly competitive. All applicants and partner institutions will be informed about the outcome of their application by the end of January, 2017. 

Application Documents

Applicants should submit the following documents via our online platform.

  • Application Form     (= online registration)
  • Letter of Motivation (1 per project)
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Transcript of Records
  • Letter of Recommendation
  • Photo

Late or incomplete applications cannot be considered.