The University of Trento and the International School for advanced Studies (SISSA) in Trieste offer a joint education program named Graduate Program in Cognitive Science.
SISSA is a leading center for higher learning and research in Italy. Its purpose is to foster research and the training of young scientists at the graduate and post-graduate level. A variety of research groups are active in Neuroscience, spanning Cognitive Neuroscience, aimed at understanding how the brain produces behavior, and Neurobiology, investigating the molecular, cellular and integrative mechanisms at work in the nervous system. All of the activities at SISSA are in English.
The two-year program is offered to students selected for the Master’s course in Cognitive Science at UniTrento. Students enrolled in the Program will spend the first year at the Center for Mind/Brain Sciences (CIMeC) and the second year at SISSA.
Admitted students who succeed in fulfilling the requirements of the Program will obtain the official Italian degree Laurea Magistrale in Cognitive Science - Scienze Cognitive (classe LM-55 Scienze Cognitive) from UniTrento and the Diploma in Cognitive Science from SISSA.
Every year up to 4 selected students (at least 2 places are reserved to non-EU students) can participate in the joint UniTrento-SISSA program and they will receive economic benefits during their stay in the respective locations.
Candidates are required to apply online for the Master’s course in Cognitive Science by the deadlines specified in the MCS Call for applications, stating their intention to participate in the UniTrento-SISSA Program and submitting an additional motivation letter specific for the Program.
Candidates will be selected based on their curriculum vitae and studiorum, statement of purpose, references and interest / experience in research topics relevant for SISSA. For more information on the application and selection process please see the UniTrento-SISSA Program - Call for applications.
Selected students are required to confirm acceptance of the UniTrento-SISSA fellowship within 1 week after receiving the offer notification.
Non-EU students are recommended to follow the instructions of the UniTrento Welcome Office regarding the visa application procedure and the application for the accommodation at the Opera Universitaria residences. UniTrento will inform non-EU students regarding the enrollment procedures for international students.
EU students are eligible to apply for the Opera Universitaria scholarship and / or accommodation according to the deadlines set by the Opera Universitaria Call (usually published in June). EU students must enroll to UniTrento according to the deadlines and procedures, as described here (usually published in August).
UniTrento scholarship vs. UniTrento-SISSA scholarship (for non-EU students only)
It is not possible to benefit from both scholarships at the same time.
By confirming your acceptance of the UniTrento-SISSA Program, you automatically renounce to the UniTrento scholarship, even if you have already been assigned to.
The winners of the UniTrento-SISSA fellowship will be contacted by the MCS secretariat in order to start the procedure for receiving the UniTrento-SISSA scholarship by the end of September.
Students who benefits from the UniTrento-SISSA scholarship have right to free accommodation in Trento during the first year and a contribution to the accommodation expenses in Trieste during the second year.
|UniTrento scholarship||UniTrento-SISSA scholarship|
|Amount 1st year: 5.200 euros||Amount 1st year: 2.500 euros|
|Accommodation: rates available at http://www.operauni.tn.it/servizi/alloggio/tariffe||Accommodation: free at Opera Universitaria residencies|
|Amount 2nd year(*provided that the merit requirement is fulfilled): 5.200 euros||Amount 2nd year(*provided that the merit requirement is fulfilled): 500 euros/month|
|Accommodation: in Opera Universitaria facilities. Rates available at http://www.operauni.tn.it/servizi/alloggio/tariffe||Accommodation: private with a contribution up to 250 euros/month (gross)|
Opera Universitaria scholarship vs. UniTrento-SISSA scholarship (for EU students only)
It is not possible to benefit from both scholarships at the same time. Students are required to accept / refuse the Opera Universitaria scholarship according to the deadlines set in the respective Call. The MCS Secretariat will provide all the necessary information to help students making the most favorable choice.
Students who have not applied / are not eligible for the Opera Universitaria scholarship have to notify the MCS secretariat by the end of September in order to start the procedure to receive the UniTrento-SISSA scholarship. All other students have to notify the MCS secretariat regarding their decision about the Opera Universitaria scholarship by the end of October.
In both cases, students have right to free accommodation in Trento during the first year and a contribution to the accommodation expenses in Trieste during the second year.
|Opera Universitaria scholarship||UniTrento-SISSA scholarship|
|Amount 1st year: "pendolare" scolarship, max. 2.854 euros, depending on the student's financial situation||Amount 1st year: 2.500 euros|
|Accommodation: free at Opera Universitaria residencies||Accommodation: free at Opera Universitaria residencies|
|Amount 2nd year: "pendolare" scolarship, max. 2.854 euros, depending on the student's financial situation||Amount 2nd year: 500 euros/month|
|Accommodation: private with a contribution up to 250 euros/month (gross)||Accommodation: private with a contribution up to 250 euros/month (gross)|
First year at UniTrento
A meeting for the presentation of the joint program will be held at the beginning of October. The meeting is an opportunity to ask questions and receive clarifications regarding both the organizational and academic aspects of the Program.
A visit at SISSA takes place in June. Students have the opportunity to visit the labs, listen to PhD presentations, meet the faculty etc. UniTrento covers travel expenses and subsistence costs.
In order to complete the UniTrento-SISSA program students have to earn 132 university credits.
- It is recommended to complete all mandatory courses and elective courses at UniTrento during the first year.
- Students have the opportunity to attend the free choice courses either at UNITrento or at SISSA during the second year.
- Students are required to attend some supplementary courses at SISSA during the second year.
- It is mandatory to complete both internship and Master’s thesis at SISSA during the second year.
Admission to the second year of the Program
Students must satisfy the following criteria to be admitted to the second year of the Program:
- at least 45 ECTS with a GPA of at least 27/30
- no marks lower than 24/30
Failing to meet these criteria may result in the exclusion from the Program. However, all the exams and credits already acquired will be acknowledged towards the completion of the Curriculum to obtain the Master’s degree in Cognitive Science from UniTrento.
Second year at SISSA
Courses at SISSA begin in October. Students are required to arrive at SISSA at the beginning of October for the check-in activities. Students have to ask for an extension of the Opera Universitaria housing contract if they need to stay in Trento until the end of September (the costs are covered by UniTrento).
Students have to provide the required information to the SISSA Secretariat at the beginning of September.
The SISSA campus is located in Opicina (Trieste), in Via Bonomea 265. It can easily be reached via public transports, which connects the campus to downtown Trieste (at 4 km only). SISSA has a housing service which gives students all kind of support in order to find an accommodation in Trieste, including language assistance if they do not speak Italian.
In order to receive a contribution to the accommodation expenses, students are required to hand in a copy of their housing contract to the SISSA Secretariat. Morever, in order to receive the monthly reimbursement, they must hand in the rent payment receipt within the first half of each month to the SISSA Secretariat.
On the ground floor in the main building on the SISSA campus, bar and canteen service is available.
In order to access laboratories at SISSA, students are required to undergo some health surveillance measures, including a medical visit.
For the acknowledgment of the internship credits, students have to download the internal internship forms available here. Both forms – preliminary form and completion certificate – must be submitted to the SISSA Secretariat resp. before starting and after completing the internship at SISSA.
Once completed all courses at SISSA, students are required to fill out the transcript of records self-certification form with the performed activities and submit the undersigned document to the SISSA Secretariat.
Completing the Program
UNITrento-SISSA students have to choose a supervisor at UniTrento and a supervisor at SISSA.
Students are required to submit the application for the Master’s defense according to the rules and deadlines described here.The SISSA supervisor can participate in the Graduation Committee in Trento, in presence or via Skype. Student must inform the MCS Secretariat at least 1 month in advance.
Withdrawal from the Program
In case of withdrawal from the UniTrento-SISSA Program students have to notify the administrative offices at UniTrento and SISSA as soon as possible.
Students are required to pay back the full amount of the economic benefits awarded, including the lodging expenses.
The refund of the economic benefits is not due in case of justified reasons for the withdrawal (like illness, etc.). The UniTrento-SISSA Program Board will evaluate the student's request on the basis of supporting documents.
All the exams and credits already acquired will be acknowledged towards the completion of the Curriculum to obtain the Master’s degree in Cognitive Science from UniTrento.