With the formation of the postgraduate convention in 2017 doctoral students became an independent entity to represent doctoral students and to address their concerns, such as changes in the faculty regulations for granting a PhD, the student-supervisor agreement or the courses offered by the Graduate Academy. This convention closes the gap of the status of students and those in teaching positions in the "Mittelbau". It defends the rights and interests of doctoral students in the Faculty of Science and provides a forum for discussion.
The council sends a member (entitled to vote) into the faculty's governing body, the “Fakultätsrat”, and acts as an advisor in all issues of concern to the faculty's doctoral students. Beyond that, the council is free to engage whatever issues it deems relevant and may pronounce statements on relevant questions in University politics.
The fundamental institution of the postgraduate convention is the general assembly. The general assembly convenes at least once a year in autumn and offers all members to directly take part in university politics. An executive committee consisting of 5 PhD students is elected from among its members. The board is led by the chair and a deputy.
The Board of Representatives - consisting of five PhD students - is elected by and from amongst the general assembly. The board of representatives is lead by a chairperson and vice-chairperson, as agreed upon by the board. Speaking for the entire postgraduate convention, the board of representatives comments on the work of and makes recommendations to other university institutions such as the rectorate or the senate. In very important cases, the board consults with the postgraduate convention first, and can appeal for a supernumerary general assembly. To advocate the postgraduates' interest towards the faculty of science more intensively, the board of representatives dispatches one advisory member to the faculty board meetings.
Further important institutions of the postgraduate convention are the internal task groups, which can be installed by both the board and the general assembly. Task groups usually serve a specific purpose that is defined upon installation, and compile progress reports and recommendations for the general assembly and the board of representatives. Every member of the postgraduate convention can be active member of any number of task groups, and thus directly take part in university politics. External working groups with the Conventions of other faculties are used for networking, exchange, and mutual support on specific issues that affect all Conventions.