The doctorate proves that the student is capable of independent scientific work. In accordance with its range of subjects, University Trier's Faculty IV awards the academic degrees of Dr. rer. pol. (Doctor rerum politicarum), Dr. rer. nat. (Doctor rerum naturalium), and Dr. phil. (Doctor philosophiae). The doctoral procedure is regulated by the Doctoral Regulations of 29 January 2020. The contact for all questions regarding the doctoral procedure at Faculty IV is the Dean's Office.
The doctorate is an independent university examination in the area of responsibility of Faculty IV. This means that doctoral procedures are fundamentally independent of any employment relationships, e.g. as a research assistant. In addition to employment as a research assistant, there are other options for financing the doctoral phase, such as scholarships. Enrolment in a doctoral programme is possible. The Graduate Centre of Trier University (GUT - Graduiertenzentrum der Universität Trier) offers comprehensive advice and support in all phases of the doctorate.
In accordance with the Rhineland-Palatinate Higher Education Act, prospective doctoral candidates must register at the beginning of their doctorate and obligary conclude a supervision agreement. In the following, the relevant information and applications for Faculty IV are listed according to the respective doctoral phase.
Current Doctoral Regulations of Faculty IV.
The Doctoral Regulations of the Faculty are only available in German. As these are sub-legal regulations of Faculty IV, only the published German versions are legally binding. We are currently working on a reading version in English, which will, however, only serve as a guide.
- Doctoral Regulations 2020 (PromO 2020)
Note: Doctoral candidates who have agreed on a supervision agreement before 12 March 2020 can choose, whether the doctoral procedure is to be carried out on the basis of the Doctoral Regulations 2004 or the Doctoral Regulations 2020.
- Doctoral Regulations 2004 (PromO 2004)
Admission to doctoral procedure requires a written application from the prospective doctoral candidate to the Dean's Office of the Faculty. If all admission requirements are met, acceptance as a doctoral candidate at Faculty IV takes place.
Admission to doctoral studies is granted to those who have completed relevant studies at a German university or a foreign university recognised as equivalent to a German university with a Master's degree (MSc, MEd, MA) or at a German university or equivalent university with the "Diplomprüfung", the academic degree M.A. (Magister Artium) or the first state examination for the teaching profession at grammar schools with at least the overall grade "good" or an equivalent grade. The Master's degree programmes offered in Faculty IV as well as degree programmes corresponding to these are considered relevant; in addition, sufficient study achievements in the intended doctoral subject (business administration, economics, sociology/ethnology, computer science, mathematics) or specialisation can be recognised as relevant.
The following paragraph is applicable if the criteria mentioned in the previous paragraph do not apply in full:
Admission to doctoral studies can also be granted in the case of insufficient relevance of the Master's programme completed or a lower overall grade. The prerequisite for this is a written application in which the applicant requests acceptance as a doctoral candidate on the basis of the exceptional case regulation. Admission to doctoral studies can also be granted if the first state examination for the teaching profession at primary schools, secondary modern schools, secondary modern schools plus and special schools, a diploma from an university of applied sciences (FH/HAW/UAS) or a bachelor's degree from an university or university of applied sciences is available. Corresponding candidates must prove that they have completed their studies with a grade of "very good" (at least 1.5) in the doctoral subject (business administration, economics, sociology/ethnology, computer science or mathematics). In addition, a "doctoral suitability assessment procedure" (Promotionseignungsfeststellungsverfahren - PEFV) must be undergone and successfully completed. For the cases mentioned in this paragraph, candidates must formulate an individual application to be addressed to the Dean of the Faculty. All applications must be sufficiently substantiated. The Dean's Office will confirm the receipt of applications, inform about any missing documents and the further progress of the procedure. Complete applications are forwarded to the doctoral committee of Faculty IV for a decision. The doctoral committee also decides in particular on matters of doctoral suitability assessment procedure.
The following applies to all applications for admission to doctoral procedure: Proof must be provided of a supervision agreement with eihter an university professor or a scientist already qualified to teach at professorial level (requires completion of habilitation process) from Faculty IV. In the case of university degrees that were not acquired in Germany, a statement of comparability for foreign higher education qualifications from the Central Office for Foreign Education (Zentralstelle für ausländisches Bildungswesen, ZAB) must be submitted.
If all admission requirements can be confirmed by the Dean's Office, acceptance as a doctoral candidate in Faculty IV of Trier University is granted by the Dean.
For admission to doctoral studies at Faculty IV, the following documents must be submitted to the Dean's Office of the Faculty:
- application for admission to doctoral studies (Note: Download the document before filling it out! The application form is currently only available in German; an english version will be provided soon. The application consists of Parts 1 and 2 of the "Betreuungsvereinbarung im Rahmen eines Promotionsverhabens an der Universität Trier". Part 1 also serves as the registration form for the legally required registration for doctoral students; Part 2 is the actual supervision agreement. Please read the handout on the document before filling it out and complete the application together with the supervising persons. The data protection information is also attached to the application form).
- certified copy of the university degree, consisting of certificates and any grade/achievement overviews (for degrees from Trier University, uncertified copies can be submitted)
- only in the case of insufficient relevance, an overall grade worse than "good", first state examination for the teaching profession at primary schools, secondary modern schools, secondary modern schools plus and special schools, a diploma from an university of applied sciences (FH/HAW/UAS) or a bachelor's degree: individually formulated and substantiated application for admission to doctoral studies (in addition to the application for admission to doctoral studies)
- only in the case of university degrees that were not acquired in Germany: statement of comparability for foreign higher education qualifications from the Central Office for Foreign Education (ZAB)
Submitting the application for admission
Since the Faculty's Doctoral Regulations currently still require applications to be submitted in writing, you must sign them personally and submit them in paper form to the Dean's Office of the department (hand them in personally during office hours or drop them in the post box or send them by post). Digital signatures cannot be accepted.
After completion of the scientific work and completion of the dissertation, doctoral candidates apply for the opening of the doctoral procedure.
To initiate the doctoral procedure, the doctoral candidate submits a written application to the Dean of Faculty IV. Within the scope of this application, a number of statements must be made and rapporteurs can be proposed. The doctoral regulations also stipulate the uniform design of the title page, which must be adhered to, as well as other obligatory components of the dissertation writing apart from the scientific work (e.g. abstract, curriculum vitae). Therefore, please read the following information carefully before you prepare the examination copies of the dissertation thesis and make sure to use the templates provided.
The application for the opening of the doctoral procedure consists of the following documents:
- Application for the opening of the doctoral procedure. Note: The application form is currently only available in German. Please download the template and save it before filling it out. Complete the template in full and sign it personally, as the doctoral regulations require the application to be in writing. The attachment "Erklärung zu individuellen, eigenständigen Leistungen" (Declaration on individual, independent achievements) must be completed separately for each definable part of the dissertation that was co-authored; if more than the three co-authors listed on the template were involved, the declaration must be submitted several times. The "Erklärung zum Status der Veröffentlichung" (Declaration on the status of publication) must be submitted separately for each definable part of the dissertation that has already been published in full or in part or is intended for publication.
- Dissertation Thesis: 4 bound copies (= examination copies). The title page must be designed in accordance with the requirements of § 5 Para. 1, Letter e) PromO 2020 and contain the information and wording specified therein; use the template for the title page of the examination copies. The examination copies must include page numbers, a bibliography, a German or English abstract and an overview of the academic career ("academic curriculum vitae").
- Dissertation Thesis: 1 digital copy. In addition to the bound copies/examination copies, a digital version of the dissertation thesis corresponding to the examination copies must be submitted with the application documents (file format: PDF; data carrier: CD or USB stick).
Submission of the application
The complete documents must be submitted to the Dean's Office of the Faculty: hand them in personally during office hours (make an appointment!). Alternatively, you may post them in the post box on the 4th floor of building C or send them by post.
After the disputation, the dissertation thesis must be published within one year. Before the thesis may be published, e.g. via the university library or a commercial publisher, permission must be obtained from the dean.
To obtain the Dean's approval to print and publish the dissertation thesis, proceed as follows:
- Send an email to the Dean's Office with the version of the dissertation thesis intended for publication (= print version) as well as the request for print approval (currently available in German only). This print version must correspond to the examination copies submitted with the application for the opening of the doctoral procedure. This also expressly applies to the German or English summary and the academic curriculum vitae; both must be included in the print version. The requirements of the doctoral regulations for the design of the title page of the print version differ from the requirements for the examination copies; use the template for the title page of the print version.
- f you have made changes to the examination copies, you must explain the nature and extent of the changes. This also applies if it is a question of conditions imposed by the rapporteurs or in the context of the disputation. Changes in content must be explained in detail, i.e. by describing the change and naming the specific text passage (page number, section) where the change was made. The correction of obvious spelling and grammatical errors must be named, provided that corresponding corrections have been made. However, a detailed list, as is required in the case of changes to the content, is not necessary.
After the application has been reviewed in the Dean's Office, the Dean's Office informs about the result. Approval for publication is granted in writing. After receiving the approval, the publication of the version of the dissertation thesis that has been released for printing can be initiated.
If the publication is to take place via the University Library of Trier University, for example by electronic publication via OPUS, and you have questions about the further procedure, please contact the Dissertation and Exchange Office of the University Library. The letter of approval from the dean must then also be submitted here.
As soon as the doctoral candidate has submitted the deposit copies, the doctoral certificate is handed over. Only after the certificate has been handed over does the doctoral candidate have the right to use the academic degree achieved.
Proof must always be provided to the Dean's Office. If the dissertation has been published by the university library, the dean's office will be informed accordingly and the doctoral certificate will be handed over. Proof can also be provided by the doctoral candidate presenting a publishing contract to the Dean's Office. In these cases, the deposit copies must be submitted to the Dean's Office immediately after printing. The doctoral procedure is deemed to be completed with the handing over of the certificate.