Contact information

Graduate Academy Heidelberg University

Service Point

Im Neuenheimer Feld 370
Room 3
69120 Heidelberg

Telephone Icon 17x17 +49 (0) 6221 / 54 - 19765


Walk-in office hours

Monday: 10 am to 12 pm
Tuesday: 2 pm to 4 pm
Wednesday: 10 am to 12 pm
Thursday: 10 am to 12 pm and 2 pm to 4 pm
and by appointment

Outside of our office hours you can reach us by telephone or email.

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Forms of doctoral training at Heidelberg University

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Doctoral disciplines at Heidelberg University

In principle, it is possible to pursue a doctorate in any of the subjects offered at the University of Heidelberg. Doctoral training can be carried out in one of two models: individual doctoral training or doctoral training within a structured doctoral program. Binational doctoral training or cotutelle is also possible in Heidelberg.

Doctoral degrees are granted by the faculties of the University of Heidelberg and the regulations governing doctoral training are set down individually by each faculty in its doctoral regulations. The following doctoral degrees are granted at the University of Heidelberg:

  • Dr. phil. - Faculty of Philosophy, Faculty of Modern Languages, Faculty of Behavioral and Cultural Studies, Faculty of Chemistry and Geosciences for the discipline of Geography
  • Dr. rer. nat. - Faculty of Biosciences, Faculty of Mathematics and Computer Science, Faculty of Physics and Astronomy, Faculty of Chemistry and Geosciences
  • Dr. iur. - Faculty of Law
  • Dr. med., Dr. med.dent., Dr. sc.hum. - Faculties of Medicine
  • Dr. rer.pol. - Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences
  • Dr. theol. - Faculty of Theology
  • Dr. ing. - Faculty of Engineering Sciences

Further information:
► Doctoral regulations of the faculties and dean’s offices
► Subjects at Heidelberg University Externer Inhalt
► Binational doctoral training – cotutelle de thèse


Individual doctoral training or structured doctoral programs?



The University offers two different models of doctoral training:

  • individual doctoral training or
  • doctoral training within a structured doctoral program.

The decision as to what kind of training to pursue will depend to a great extent on your chosen discipline and topic as well as on your own personal research and work preferences. In many cases, the boundaries between these two models are fluent because doctoral candidates who are pursuing traditional individual doctoral training may also take advantage of general structured services for doctoral candidates.

There are four graduate schools as well as many structured doctoral programs at the University, particularly in the natural scienes and life sciences but also in the humanities, social sciences and law.

Structured doctoral programs in Heidelberg 


Individual doctoral training

Doctoral training within a structured doctoral program

Individual doctoral training

  • is the classic model of doctoral training in Germany, especially in the humanities and social sciences,
  • offers a large amount of freedom in the planning and carrying out of the doctorate,
  • thus demands a great deal of independence and organizational ability.

Doctoral training within a doctoral program involves

  • a structured program of courses and workshops,
  • the supervision by more than one professor or even a doctoral committee.

If opting for individual doctoral training,

  • the doctoral candidate chooses a research topic,
  • works more or less on an individual basis with his or her doctoral supervisor.

Doctoral training within a structured doctoral program

  • has become increasingly popular since 1989,
  • comprises many different kinds in Heidelberg: from  research training groups with three to five researchers up to graduate schools with 100 or more members.
Web Administrator: Eric Herbst
Latest Revision: 2023-08-29
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