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Frequently Asked Questions

Questions and Answers

Are you interested in a doctoral program at BerGSAS? Here you can find all important information at one glance! Detailed information on our graduate school as well as the matriculation and admission process you can find in our handbook in English and German on our Service site.

When can I apply?

Application calls are generally published on February 1st of a given year. The application deadline is, if not specified otherwise, April 30th. We can only consider complete applications that are submitted in response to a call for applications.

Where does the Berlin Graduate School of Ancient Studies publish calls for applications?

Calls for applications are published on our website under Applications and at Topoi amongst the news. Furthermore they are available at academics.de and academics.com as well as the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). You can find them also in the print edition of Die Zeit.

What documents do I need to submit with my application?

  • The application form (German and English versions can be found on the Service site)
  • A cover letter
  • A doctoral project proposal
  • A work schedule
  • A writing sample (e.g., a part of your master’s thesis or an article)
  • Two letters of recommendation from university teachers
  • Copies of degree certificates/diplomas
  • Documents certifying knowledge of German and/or English

Important: Applications are processed digitally. Please do not send documents by mail.

What are the language requirements?

German: DSH-2

It is necessary to demonstrate your knowledge of the English language at level B2 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR), to enroll at the respective department/ faculty (consult your PhD regulations). If you do not possess written proof of your English proficiency at B2 level, you are personally responsible to hand this in by the time of admission. (IELTS, IELTS Academics, TOEFL, Unicert, DAAD etc.)

Can I have an external advisor?

Your main thesis advisor must be a university teacher at either the Freie Universität Berlin or the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. But project-related cooperation with the Technische Universität Berlin, the Universität der Künste Berlin and the Hochschule für Technik und Wirtschaft Berlin is also possible. External advisors can serve as second or third examiners. A bi-national doctoral degree or a cotutelle de these (a PhD from two universities) is also possible.

Important: the doctoral regulations for each faculty/department determine whether a given advisor is eligible to serve as a thesis examiner.

When do doctoral studies begin?

Doctoral studies usually begin in the Fall semester each year.

How long does the PhD program at BerGSAS last?

The PhD program at BerGSAS lasts six semesters.

Where can I find more information on the curriculum of my PhD program?

Each PhD program at BerGSAS (ALT,AOViS, APhil/HistAS, LAA, Silk Road) has regulations that stipulate, among other things, which seminars have to be completed in the course of the program and what requirements the doctoral candidates are expected to meet. The curriculum for a given program is outlined in § 11 of that program’s regulations.

What languages can my dissertation be submitted in?

You can submit your dissertation in a language other than German provided that the doctoral regulations of the faculty/department allow this and the conditions stipulated in the regulations are met. Please consult the individual faculties/departments for more information.

What titles can I earn?

The Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin confers the doctoral titles typical of German-speaking countries, e.g. Dr. phil. or Dr. theol. The Freie Universität can confer a PhD title to graduates of a graduate school, as well as titles typical of German-speaking countries, e.g. Dr. phil., Dr. theol., Dr. rer. nat., Dr. jur. The important thing is that titles such as PhD and Dr. phil. are equivalent but not interchangeable.

Please bear in mind that these titles are conferred not by the graduate school, but by the PhD boards of the faculties/departments. They can provide you with more information on the subject.

Welchen Titel kann ich erwerben?

An der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin werden die im deutschsprachigen Raum üblichen Doktortitel verliehen wie z.B. Dr. phil. oder Dr. theol. An der Freien Universität Berlin kann den Absolventinnen und Absolventen einer Graduiertenschule der Titel PhD verliehen werden und ebenso die im deutschsprachigen Raum üblichen Titel Dr. phil., Dr. theol., Dr. rer. nat., Dr. jur.
Wesentlich ist, dass Titel wie z.B. PhD und Dr. phil. vollkommen gleichwertig sind, aber nicht austauschbar. Sie entscheiden sich für einen der beiden Titel, also entweder für PhD oder Dr. phil.

Bitte beachten Sie, dass nicht die Graduiertenschule einen Titel verleiht, sondern der zuständige Promotionsausschuss der Fakultät bzw. des Fachbereiches, von dem Sie dazu Auskunft erhalten.