PhD Program at INSAIT
For Doctoral Candidates
INSAIT provides talented individuals the unique opportunity to engage in world-class research with the goal of becoming independent scientists and technology leaders.
Students receive full PhD fellowships at 36,000 € per year and are mentored by world-class researchers, including INSAIT local faculty and affiliated mentors. The duration of the PhD is up to 5 years.
INSAIT will consider students who have obtained a B.Sc. or an M.Sc. degree by the time they start in INSAIT’s doctoral program. Thus, students who are currently completing or have completed these degrees (e.g., last year B.Sc. or M.Sc. graduates) are eligible to be considered for the INSAIT doctoral program. INSAIT is generally interested in students who are enrolled or have completed B.Sc./M.Sc. degrees in the areas of computer science, data science, mathematics, physics, statistics, or electrical engineering.
Submitting your application
Please submit your application via the button to the left. It will take you to our application platform where you can upload the required documents for your application. These are:
- Curriculum Vitae (CV) – you must present a CV with the universities you attended, acquired professional experience and achievements.
- Degree certificates – official copies of your diplomas (Bachelors, Masters), if you have graduated.
- University transcripts – official copies of your university transcripts (Bachelors, Masters), listing all course work, academic hours and grades.
- Recommendation letters (optional) – submit two letters of recommendation attesting to your academic and scientific achievements relevant to your doctorate application. Your letters should contain the full contact details of the recommender.
- Motivation Letter – the candidate should clearly articulate why they would like to pursue a PhD at INSAIT.
- English Language Proficiency – the applicant is expected to have a strong command of the English language. If available, a copy of the formal certificate (TOEFL, Cambridge, IELTS, etc.) should be provided.
NOTE: All documents must be either issued or translated into English.
Frequently Asked Questions
How will my application be assessed?
The main criteria in evaluating incoming applicants are the relevant qualifications as presented in the application process – quality of the course work and respective grades, extra-curricular achievements, motivation, recommendations, etc.
Successful candidates will be invited for a technical interview conducted by the particular faculty (or several faculty) interested in the candidate. Once admitted, candidates can expect to start in the doctoral program as soon as possible. Please note that possible visa applications and issuing of work permits may cause delays in certain cases.
When will I be notified about the application result?
Every applicant will be notified within two months of applying. If there is interest in the candidate by a particular adviser (or several) at INSAIT after applying, then this candidate will be contacted by the prospective adviser(s) for next steps, such as appropriate technical interviews and assessments, which if positive, will result in a working PhD contract for the candidate.
What if the applying student only has a B.Sc. degree but not M.Sc.?
In these cases, the student is expected to complete their M.Sc. degree during the first two years (part I) of the INSAIT doctoral program. Note that during this period, the student is fully supported financially (36,000 EUR / year) by INSAIT as the student has been accepted in the INSAIT doctoral program, with the intent to continue to part II.
Are international applicants welcome?
Absolutely. INSAIT’s goal is to become an international world-class research and education institution, and thus we embrace diversity. Further, the working language is English and all communication takes place in English.
What if I am unsure whether I want to pursue a PhD at INSAIT?
If you are still a bachelor student, we suggest that you apply to our Undergraduate Summer Research Fellowship (SURF) program. The SURF program will allow you to engage in the research process with existing INSAIT faculty, and make a decision whether you would like to pursue this path in greater depth.
Is it required that candidates choose one of the research areas listed here (https://insait.ai/research-areas/) for their PhD before they apply (e.g., in their motivation letter)?
Candidates can select a number of areas of interest and this is common. It is generally advisable that a candidate roughly knows the general set of areas they are interested in, but it is also possible that this set changes during the doctoral program as their interests shift. Further, INSAIT strongly encourages interdisciplinary collaboration so often it is the case that their PhD topic will contain a multitude of areas.
Do admission documents have to be legalised?
For the initial acceptance, we accept official documents, however, to issue the contract, we need documentation to be legalised.
Is there a recommended format in the way the motivation letter should be done?
We generally recommend that the candidate clearly states why they are pursuing INSAIT, what their general interests are, what their goals in the program are, as well as any other information they deem important. The motivation statement should generally be up to 2 pages long, A4 style.