Frequently Asked Questions

The following is a continuously updated list of questions. Questions are grouped in several categories: eligibility, procedures, courses, financial, and miscellaneous.

Eligibility

I have completed a Master's degree. How can I enter the MIP program?

Students with  a Master's degree can be admitted directly into the 3-year doctoral research phase.

I am already a doctoral student at another institution. Can I be admitted to MIP?

The 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.

Procedures

How do I apply to the IRTG?

Follow the instructions on the "open positions" page.

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, may be presented.

Do I need to have proven German language abilities?

No. Knowing German is very helpful in daily life in Aachen, however. Opportunities to take German classes will be available.

Obtaining official transcripts, translations, GRE or TOEFL scores is very expensive. Can you use other versions of these documents?

For initial consideration, unofficial copies of transcripts (grade records), GRE, TOEFL scores, and unofficial translations may be accepted. For final admission, official documents will be required.

What happens after I send my application?

Applications are going to be reviewed. Promising candidates will be asked to complete application materials (if necessary), and will have phone interviews with the Pi's from MIP which the applicant applied for. Additional on-site interview may be requested. 

Financial

What is TV-L 13?

Most doctoral student positions in Germany are advertised as TV-L 13. 

General

TV (or TVÖD) stands for Tarifvertrag im Öffentlichen Dienst – it means tariffs for German civil service employees. The TV tariffs determine the salary based on experience and family situation; there is normally no variability based on negotiation or location. These tariffs are regularly adjusted for inflation.

TV-L 13 or TV-L E13

TV level 13 (Entgeltgruppe 13) is the tariff that doctoral students in engineering, computer science and applied math (high-demand occupations) qualify for. For a single person, this means a gross salary of about €3600 per month and about €4000 after one year. Compared to many doctoral stipends in the US, this is a pretty good deal. Working hours are 39.83 per week. Paid vacation is, depending on age, between 26 and 30 days per year.

Calculators

If you know a bit of German, a TV calculator can help determine exactly brutto salary, based on your age, experience and family status

What tuition fees must I pay?

Students who are admitted to MIP attend the entire program without having to pay tuition. In fact, in the doctoral phase, students receive a TVL-13. 

What about housing?

Students are responsible for financing their own rental apartments from the salary they receive. Assistance in finding suitable housing will be provided by the MIP Service Team.

Miscellaneous

What is a Research Training Group or Graduiertenkolleg?

International Research Training Groups (IRTGs) are a funding instrument of the German Science Foundation. International Research Training Groups provide opportunities for joint doctoral training programmes between German universities and universities abroad. The research and study programmes are jointly developed and supervised. Doctoral students in the programme complete a six-month research stay at the respective partner institution.

I have further questions. Whom can I contact?

Don't hesitate to contact the AICES Service Team by email or phone; see our contact information page.