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Who is eligible for membership and what are the benefits?

Are you nearing the end of your graduate studies, or just recently finished? Are you interested in taking a doctorate in the field of humanities or social sciences?
If so, you are eligible to apply for junior membership of the Gutenberg Graduate School of the Humanities and Social Sciences!
Junior members enjoy access to exclusive and comprehensive qualification and skills training and advisory support services to help set them on course for a successful doctorate. They are also eligible to apply for a research proposal scholarship.

We also offer potential doctoral candidates the opportunity to apply for a six-month research proposal scholarship. This allows them to obtain the support needed to develop their doctoral project following graduation until they can apply for funding (position or scholarship).

Applying for junior membership

Full GSHS membership is open to all registered doctoral students of Johannes Gutenberg University who are engaged in a research project in the humanities or social sciences. Applications for admission are possible at any time and there is no selection process based on performance criteria. However, since the GSHS wishes to ensure that minimum standards in the quality of supervision are adhered to, candidates are required to submit a written supervision agreement. In exceptional cases, later submission of the supervision agreement may be possible, but this must not exceed six months from the date of admission.
Full members also have the opportunity to participate in an advanced training programme geared specifically to the needs of doctoral candidates in the social sciences and humanities and to receive regular notifications of funding opportunities. We will also be happy to advise you in person at the GSHS office, where you can also take advantage of the opportunity to network with other doctoral students in the humanities and social sciences.

Further information on admission requirements
Further information on full membership

Postdoctoral students – young researchers who have completed their doctorate and are continuing to pursue an academic career though not yet working as university professors –play an important part in the supervision and support of GSHS doctoral students and prospective doctoral students. With the experience of their own doctorates still fresh in their minds, they can offer valuable support to current and prospective doctoral candidates while at the same time contributing to their own professional development irrespective of whether or not they already have formal authorisation to independently supervise doctoral projects.
Details on the application process for senior membership will be announced shortly. Register for our GSHS Newsletter and you will receive full information on the current activities of the Gutenberg Graduate School of the Humanities and Social Sciences. Should you have any further questions or suggestions, please do not hesitate to contact our office. Our friendly, helpful staff will do their best to assist you.

Doctoral candidates who have been accepted, or are registered or enrolled as such at another university in Germany or abroad have the option of being admitted as “guest members” of the GSHS and, depending on available capacity, to take advantage of the support programme offered by the GSHS (e.g. participation in workshops and other events, access to advisory services, training in key research and other skills as well as provision of opportunities for networking etc.). Guest members are not entitled to financial support from the GSHS. Prerequisite for this is completion of a research visit at the JGU and/or demonstrable involvement in research and teaching at the JGU.

To become a guest member, simply fill out the admission form and send it off. In addition to this, you will need to supply proof of your acceptance/registration/enrolment as a doctoral student at your home university and provide an informal letter of recommendation from a JGU university lecturer who is authorised to act as supervisor. In certain circumstances, you may be required to supply further supporting documents with your application for admission as a visiting doctoral student. These should be sent to the GSHS office by email and are detailed here. The office will be happy to advise you.

The final decision on applications for admission as a visiting doctoral student is made, on a case-by-case basis, by the director of the GSHS.


Why become a member?

The ideal preparation for a PhD does not begin when you receive the letter of acceptance from your faculty, school or academy, officially register as a doctoral student at the Johannes Gutenberg University and become eligible to apply for full membership of the GSHS. To help you hit the ground running, we offer advanced students and graduates the chance to apply for junior membership. Junior membership will already allow you to benefit from our exclusive advisory and educational opportunities along with the latest information on funding.
The right approach at the beginning of your doctorate will help get you off to the best possible start. This is all the more important when, as is often the case in the humanities and social sciences, you can find yourself working in isolation without involvement in a research group or postgraduate programme. In such circumstances, opportunities to engage in discussion and exchange ideas with like-minded people can be invaluable.
Junior members are entitled to the same range of services as full members. Junior membership does not entail any obligations for the holder.

Applying for junior membership

Taking on a doctorate in the humanities and social sciences brings a lot of freedom, but freedom also entails personal responsibility. There will be times you’ll feel the need for more support – want to talk things over with others, exchange ideas, gain new perspectives beyond the boundaries of your own discipline. At such times, we will be there to support you, with information, counselling, advice on academic opportunities, networking with fellow PhD students and financial support – one-stop, stress free and without obligation. And of course, you will also find straightforward, easy access to all relevant offers from our cooperation partners.
Further information for doctoral candidates

The general conditions for the planned senior membership for postdoctoral students will be made known shortly. Interested in the work of the GSHS? Think you might like to get involved and gain or increase your experience of working with doctoral students? Contact us now!

Applying for Full Membership (for doctoral students)

To become a member, simply fill in the admission form and send it off. Your application will be checked by our office and we will inform you via e-mail what further documentation is required to process the application.

Admission Requirements