Frequently Asked Questions

Application procedure

How can I apply?

Please submit the application documents for your desired position(s) as a PDF according to the procedure mentioned at the end of each job advertisement, either by e-mail to the supervisor or by upload to the recruiting system.

Can I apply for more than one position?

Of course you can apply for various positions you are interested in as different professors at distinct institutes supervise the projects. Therefore, you must submit your application documents separately for each position.

Can I apply although I haven't finished my master's degree yet?

You may already apply now even if you have not yet completed your Master studies. In this case, please submit a list of courses including marks that you have attended up to now. In case your documents are not written in English or German, please submit a translation in addition to the scan of the original document. You can translate the documents by yourself. A certified translation is not required for initial consideration.

To which language should I translate the certificates/transcripts?

If the documents are not written in English or German, they should be translated preferably into English.

Should all translations be certified?

For initial consideration unofficial translations may be accepted and, of course, PDFs of the original as well as the translated content. For final admission, official documents will be required, which means that the translation of all of your documents should be certified.

May I digitize the paper sheets provided by the translator and send them as PDFs?

For initial consideration, PDFs are accepted. For final admission, you should hand in a certified original translation, as a digitized version will not be accepted.

What should I do if my email does not reach the recipient?

In case you get an error message when sending the email please check if the message size does not exceed the size limits. The attachments should usually not exceed 10 MB. If that does not help, please contact hds-lee@fz-juelich.de.

How long does it take until I receive feedback after sending my application?

The decision on admission is usually given within 3 months after receipt of the application or after expiry of the advertising deadline.

What would be the title of the degree after completing the thesis?

In Germany you get the doctor title. Depending on the choosen project, you will get either the title Dr. rer. nat. or Dr.-Ing. at one of the following universities: RWTH Aachen, University of Cologne, or HHU Düsseldorf

Language skills

Do I need to submit a “Test of English as a Foreign Language” (TOEFL) results?

Candidates with degrees from English-speaking institutions do not need to send TOEFL results. Alternative documentation of English language ability, such as Gymnasium records, are accepted as well.

What is a minimum TOEFL score required for admission?

TOEFL scores are just one of the factors in the admission process. No strict range is specified.

The TOEFL test is very expensive. Do you accept also other tests?

We accept all kinds of evidences of your English-speaking skills, such as IELTS® academic module or Pearson (PTE) scores. English as main school subject in the Abitur is considered likewise.

Do I need to have proven German language abilities?

Even if knowing German is very helpful in daily life, it is not required for application. Even so there will be opportunities to take German classes.

Admission to HDS-LEE

Can I do an internship at HDS-LEE?

Generally, the program is designed for doctoral researchers who are assigned to HDS-LEE specific projects and have their projects at the respective institutes. A doctoral internship is not planned. If you are interested in a general internship, you could specifically contact members of HDS-LEE.

Does HDS-LEE provide funding for my doctoral project if I am already working on my doctorate?

The graduate school program is designed for students with a Master’s degree or who will complete their Master’s degree within the next few month. We will not finance already existing doctoral projects. We can only fund the positions that are advertised on our Admission site: https://www.hds-lee.de/admission/

Can I be admitted to HDS-LEE even though I am already a doctoral researcher at another institution?

HDS-LEE doctoral research stage is meant to be taken in its entirety, i.e., full three years. No "credit" for research performed elsewhere will be given.

If you are a doctoral researcher at RWTH, FZJ, DLR, UzK, or MPIE and funded by third parties, you will have the opportunity to become an “associated doctoral researcher”. As requirement for becoming an “associated doctoral researcher” you have to be in the first few months of your doctoral studies and your project should fit into HDS-LEE overall topics. “Associated doctoral researchers” can participate fully in the HDS-LEE program. For details, please contact  hds-lee@fz-juelich.de.