Frequently Asked Questions

Please check that the answer to your question is not covered below before you contact us.

Am I eligible to apply for the PhD Program of MUDS?

Please check if you are eligible on this site.

Am I eligible to apply if I have not finished my Master's studies?

Applicants still studying for their degree may provide a provisional certificate from the university, stating the examination marks already obtained up until know and an estimated graduation date.

You should receive your degree not later than the first of October of the same year in order to be able to be accepted to the MUDS PhD program and enrol at one of Munich's universities TUM or LMU.

In case you have further questions, please contact the MUDS office.

Which Master's degree is recommended?

It is recommended that applicants hold a Master’s degree (or equivalent) in one of the following study programs:

  • Computer science, data science, computational science etc. with focus on, e.g., data analysis, statistics, algorithms, information theory and machine learning.
  • Domain sciences with a very strong focus or substantial specialization in computer science, data science, computational science etc.
  • Interdisciplinary study programs with substantial components in computer science (e.g., bioinformatics or geoinformatics).

When should I apply for MUDS?

There is one application round each year. Please check the current application schedule.

You may apply if you will finish your Master's degree and be able to start your PhD by the beginning of the winter semester (first of October). In this case you may submit your current transcript and provide us with your Master's certificate after your graduation. Please upload a provisional certificate from the university, stating the examination marks already obtained and an estimated graduation date.

When can I start my PhD?

Candidates who are selected should plan to start their PhD latest by the beginning of the winter term (first of October) of the same year. 

Please contact the MUDS office if you have further questions.

Am I going to be reimbursed for travel expenses to the on-site interviews?

Yes, you are going to be reimbursed for your travel expenses when you are invited to an on-site interview.

In case you are invited to an on-site interview you may require a passport or visa to travel to Germany. Please ensure that you are able to obtain the required travel documents in time for the interview. Please carefully study the homepage of the German embassy in your country. It is your responsibility to have the documents required for travel in time.

Is there a tuition fee?

There is no tuition fee and PhD students are financed throughout their PhD studies. You may need to pay a university fee of approximately 130 Euro per semester if you need to register with the university for your visa.

Do I have to register with a university?

If you are accepted as a PhD student with MUDS, you have to register at the university where you will receive your doctoral degree within the first 3 months of starting your PhD. This is essential as your PhD is awarded by the university you registered with and not one of the Helmholtz centers (HMGU, IPP, DLR). After your successful registration at the university, we kindly request you to inform the MUDS office.

What is the language of MUDS?

The language of MUDS is English.

You may attend a courses and seminars as part of the PhD program, including German courses and scientific English courses, for free.

Do I need a proof of my English language skills?

The PhD training program offered by MUDS is in English. As such, we request applicants who are non-native English speakers (from Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, UK and USA) to demonstrate their English language proficiency upon application. This can be done by providing us with one of the following information:

  • proof that a significant part of your university education was conducted in English or
  • a statement from your university or a supervisor on your English proficiency, or
  • by providing a certificate from an English language test that you took in the past 12 months (e.g. TOEFL, IELTS, CAE).

What if I do not have a certificate proving my English ability?

In case you do not have sufficient time to do a language test for English and your studies were not in English please provide a document from your university stating your English language abilities. Please be reminded that an official English test is highly advantageous.

Do I need to take a Graduate Record Examination (GRE)?

A Graduate Record Examination (GRE) may be advantageous for your application but it is not mandatory.

Do I need an English translation of my certificates?

It is highly recommended to submit an official English translation of your certificates. If you are offered a position, an offical English translation of the certificate is required to register with an university (TUM or LMU).

Do I have to contact group leaders before sending my application?

Please, do not contact group leaders before sending your application if you would like to apply to the MUDS PhD program. Please apply through the online application form.

However, not all group leaders recruit every year. In case you are interested in working with them you may ask them whether they take applications.

What if I cannot upload my documents to the online system?

Please check that you have saved your file as a PDF document that does not exceed 3MB. If your file is in the wrong format or too large, you will have to modify it and then try to upload it again.

What if my referees have not received the e-mail asking them to submit a letter of recommendation?

Please ask your referee to check their spam folder. If they still do not have the e-mail, please ask them to send their letter of recommendation as a PDF document to the MUDS office.

Please be reminded that you do not have to wait for your referees to submit their letters of recommendation before you submit your application. Please submit your application early to facilitate a fast review process. However, it is your responsibility that the application is complete and your referees have submitted recommendation letters before the deadline.

Do I have to wait with submission of the online application until the referees submit their letters of recommendation?

NO - please be reminded that you do not have to wait for your referees to submit their letters of recommendation before you submit your application. Please submit your application early to facilitate a fast review process. However, it is your responsibility that the application is complete and your referees have submitted recommendation letters before the deadline.

What if I have made a mistake in my online application?

If you have not yet submitted your application, you should be able to correct the mistake using the "edit" function.

In case you have made a mistake in the referee information or if you have already submitted your application, please send us an email with the following information:

  • First name
  • Last name
  • Login email address
  • Detailed description of your problem

How will my application be evaluated?

Applications will be evaluated within 4 weeks of the deadline. We will inform applicants immediately and invite successful candidates for interviews.

May I apply for a second time?

Please contact the MUDS office if you would like to apply a second time or are interested in a PhD project with one of the principal investigators.

Can I apply for a PhD position outside of the selection rounds?

If you would like to apply for a PhD position outside the selection rounds, we recommend that you get in contact with group leaders or principal investigators directly. You can find further information about research groups and principal investigators on our website.

If you did not find an answer to your question please contact us.

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