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Searching for an internship

Searching, obtaining and finishing an internship is a very independent process and is an important preparation towards your professional career. Based on your personal preferences you will have to search independently for a research group within your field of research.


At Radboud University, research in Biology is organised amongst others within Radboud Institute for Biology and Environmental Sciences (RIBES). The smaller unit of organisation of research within the institutions is the department. In the list you can see which departments fit your specialisation.

Medical Biology

At Radboud University, research in medical biology is organised within three institutions: Radboudumc, RIMLS and Donders Institute. The character of Radboudumc is medical in a broad sense, RIMLS is working in the field of molecular and cell biology and Donders Institute in the field of brain and nervous system. Please study the sites to find the research of your interest. The RIMLS and Donders Institute have their own building. Researchers of Radboudumc sometimes have their laboratory in the hospital, sometimes in Donders Institute, but mostly in RIMLS. The smaller unit of organisation of research within the institutions is the department. Suggestions for this level you will find in the course guide. Check here the possible Departments for internships (master biology) or Departments for internships (master medical biology).

Websites publishing internship-vacancies


Animal Ecology and Physiology:


Donders Institute:

When you search for an internal internship at a Radboud University or Radboudumc department, an authorised examiner is available at the department. Moreover, a second reader, an examiner associated with the (Medical) Biology programme of the Radboud University, will grade your report and presentation (see Examiners).

External Internship

When you arrange an internship abroad, at another university or company, it is an external internship. This external internship needs approval, which can be given by an examiner associated with the (Medical) Biology programme of the Radboud University on behalf of the Examination Board. The examiner will then also act as the examiner of your internship (see Examiners). Importantly, we urge you to discuss this with your student advisor as soon as you decided to search for an external internship (Study Abroad). In general, your plans for going abroad can best start with an appointment with the coordinator exchange Faculty of Science: mrs. C. Mooren, c.mooren@science.ru.nl.

If you have found - and agreed on - an external internship, make sure you also fill in the Internship Agreement form (pdf, 425 kB) that has been created for that. Part of this form can be filled out by yourself (first 3 pages) and the other part by the external company / university. You both need to sign the form, after which you can upload it in Osiris Case when registering for your internship, see here.

Of note, you can meet with the internship coordinators (internship.biosciences@ru.nl) to discuss general information regarding the internship proposal or procedure or when you experience difficulties in finding an internship. For questions regarding the planning of your master programme, please contact your student advisor.

Application for an internship

When you are considering a certain internship, you write a letter of application to a staff member of the department or assigned contact person. This letter of application is also an assignment for the master’s portfolio. Some tips in the first contact with your future supervisor:

  • Write a personalized mail for the researcher in question and describe your motivation to do an internship in this research group, technique or topic.
  • Enclose your CV and (detailed) motivation letter for the specific research group.
  • Respond with academic professionality (e.g. in time and appropriate).
  • Career service provides support in writing your letter of application and CV (https://www.ru.nl/fnwi/careerservice/ ).

Internship goals & requirements

In general, your internship has the goal to develop your academic competences and your independent professional practice. In more detail, in your internship, you will learn and develop to formulate new scientific questions and hypotheses in the biological/biomedical field, conduct scientific experiments in an independent manner and discuss results in written form according to standards of an academic article and oral presentation.  Specified learning goals can be found here: Master learning goals. Above all, your internship has to meet the EER- criteria (EER), and therefore the internship coordinators will evaluate your internship proposal at these four levels:

The internship project …

  • answers a biological/biomedical research question (a research question derived from biological theory, with an emphasis on biological processes);
  • includes fieldwork or labwork and academic data analyses;
  • covers a specified amount of time (Table 1, See registering your internship).
  • and its results are described in an individual report and presentation (See Finishing your internship).

Meeting with your future examiner and/or daily supervisor

Meet with your future first assessor and/or daily supervisor, make adequate arrangements and discuss all the aspects of importance for your internship. The preliminaries below can be helpful in the meeting with your first assessor and/or daily supervisor.

Moreover, the next sections of this guide “registering your internship” and “starting your internship” will be helpful in the discussion with your first assessor. When you and your supervisor and/or first assessor conclude that it is a “go”, please register for your internship in consultation with your first assessor of the current academic year (see Registering your internship).


  1. Content of the research
    - What is the core question of the research within the internship?
    - In which way is the internship part of the ongoing research of the department?

  2. Research method
    - Which research techniques will be used?
    - Which other specific research methods will be used?

  3. Duration of the internship
    - What is the time span of the practical work?
    - What is the time span of the theoretical work?

  4. Schedule How much time is reserved for:
    - studying literature and preparations;
    - practical work;
    - writing your report?

  5. Time for supervision
    - How intensive and in which way will the student be supervised?
    - If there is more than one supervisor: how are the tasks divided?

  6. Progress consultations
    - How often will there be discussions between the student and the supervisor on the student's progress?
    - What is discussed exactly?
    - Will there be a mid-term evaluation?

  7. Evaluation of the practical component
    - Which items make up the practical component of the internship?
    - How is the assessment of the practical work incorporated in the final mark?

  8. Working hours
    - What does a typical day in the lab look like?
    - Are the working hours fixed or flexible?

  9. Working environment and facilities
    - Will the students have their own workplace?
    - Are there any risks or safety issues that should be kept in mind?
    - Can the student use computer facilities?

  10. Completing the report and final presentation
    - How much time is available for the completion of the report once the student has finished the practical work?
    - When will the final presentation take place?