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Application, supervision, admission

How do I become a doctoral researcher?

You have successfully completed your studies and would now like to do your doctorate (PhD): in order to begin a doctorate at the TU Dortmund University, you need the supervision approval of a professor. On this page, you will find an overview of application procedures and the registration process.

The doctorate takes place at one of the 17 departments of the TU Dortmund University. The respective doctoral regulations of your Department specify all formal requirements and processes. Please read them carefully before applying for a doctorate.

A long building surrounded by trees © Nikolas Golsch​/​TU Dortmund

Formal requirements

For a doctorate at the TU Dortmund University, you need a degree that qualifies you for a doctorate. As a rule, this is a good Master's degree (or an equivalent degree). Depending on the Department, you can also earn a doctorate with an outstanding Bachelor's degree. This usually also requires the successful participation in preparatory studies for a doctorate.

In addition, you always need the supervision approval of a professor at the TU Dortmund University. Although not a formal requirement, having a second supervisor is also common.

Doctoral regulations

Below you will find links to the information pages about doctorates of the departments of the TU Dortmund University. There you will always find the latest version of the respective doctoral regulations.


Finding a supervisor is the most important step to begin a doctorate at the TU Dortmund University. Often the supervision already results from a personal contact with a professor who offers a doctorate, or you contact her/him to find out if such a position is available. However, you can also apply for a suitable position as a research associate or for a doctoral program with a suitable topic.

An unsolicited application is another way to find a supervisor for your topic. The disciplines differ in whether you introduce yourself with a topic of your own – in which case you should develop a short exposé – or whether the chair specifies a topic.

You will fill out a supervision agreement with your supervisor in which you jointly define the key points of supervision (e.g. schedule, interim reports, and feedback). In this way, expectations and requirements of the doctoral supervision become transparent and explicit for both sides.

In order to provide ideal conditions for your doctorate, TU Dortmund University has adopted Principles of Good Doctoral Supervision.

Admission to the doctorate and enrollment as a doctoral student

In order to be admitted to the doctorate, you must submit an application to the doctoral committee of your Department. You will find the necessary documents in the respective doctoral regulations and on the website of your Department. The doctoral committee reviews whether you meet all requirements for the doctorate. We strongly recommend that you submit your application early. This will create legal certainty for your doctorate.

Doctoral researchers at the TU Dortmund University enroll as doctoral students after being admitted to the doctoral program by the Department. As a rule, you must submit a proof of enrollment to the doctoral committee within three weeks.


Further information for prospective doctoral researchers