Diese Seite ist nur auf Englisch verfügbar.

Doctoral Program (GPTS)Application

In yearly calls for application the GPTS is looking for excellently qualified graduates in the Humanities and Social Sciences who have developed an individual research project with a strong, innovative transcultural perspective.

Since 2019, the yearly application rounds are coupled with two doctoral scholarships granted by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) within its Graduate School Scholarship Program (GSSP). These scholarships are for non-German candidates only. The GPTS also welcomes applications by candidates with other funding sources.

Read current CfA (PDF)

Deadline extended to February 25, 2024, 23:59 CET!

Application requirements

Applicants must hold an M.A. or equivalent in a discipline of the humanities or social sciences with an above-average grade (at least 1.7, B+, 2+, "magna cum laude", or equivalent). The degree has to reflect at least four years of study at university level. Applicants who plan to graduate in the current academic year must provide a university transcript that clearly indicates the degree progress.

Applicants must prove advanced language skills in English by providing a certificate confirming at least level C1 according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages, e.g. a score of 100 in the Internet based TOEFL or a score of 7.0 in the IELTS. Other methods of proof may also be acceptable (see FAQs).

University and language certificates must be submitted in English, German, French or Italian. Documents in other languages must be submitted as certified translations into English or German.

Application Documents

All applications must be submitted in one PDF file and must include the following documents:

  1. Completed application form (Please note: If you do not already have a supervisor, please simply indicate the professor from Heidelberg University - primarily the three participating faculties -  you consider best suited for supervision);
  2. Letter of motivation of approx. 600 words, explaining why you want to pursue your project in the GPTS, what qualifies you to do so, and how your project fits and contributes to the transcultural agenda at the HCTS;
  3. CV with information on your education, your work and research experience so far, language and other skills;
  4. Project proposal (2000–2500 words) that includes your project title, a summary, an overview of research area and literature (state of the art), your key research questions and objectives, information on your methods and sources as well as a bibliography (The bibliography does not count towards the word limit);
  5. Time plan detailing the schedule for your project;
  6. Certificates and transcripts of all university degrees;
  7. Proof of English language skills equivalent to at least C1 (CEFR), plus - if applicable - other languages relevant for the proposed project;
  8. Two letters of recommendation on the DAAD form.

The proposed doctoral project must have a clear connection to the general research framework of the HCTS.

The letter of motivation, the CV, the proposal and the time plan must be written in English. University and language certificates may be submitted in English, German, French or Italian. Documents in other languages must be submitted as certified translations into English or German. The letters of recommendation may be submitted in English or German.

Submission and Selection

Applications must be submitted electronically as one PDF file (NAME_FirstName.pdf) via email. Please make sure to arrange the documents within the PDF in the order given above. The two letters of recommendation may be included in the PDF. Alternatively, your referees may send them directly to the same email-address.

The deadline for the submission of all documents, including the letters of recommendation, is February 25, 2024, 23:59 CET. Late submissions cannot be taken into consideration!

After the deadline the selection committee will shortlist about six to ten candidates to be invited to present and discuss their projects in front of the committee. The presentation and discussion will be conducted online around mid-April 2024. Following these interviews the final selection will be made and the nominations announced to the DAAD. Only then we will inform all applicants about the outcome of the selection.

Please note that we cannot provide applicants with any content-related feedback on their application.

Contact for enquiries and submission