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Doing a doctorate at KIT

KIT with its outstanding integration of a research-oriented university and a national research center of the Helmholtz Association provides extensive working opportunities and far-reaching career prospects. Research is conducted at around 130 institutes, from basic research to application in the form of products and processes.


KIT offers:

Visit KIT web pages to get an overview of e.g. important formalities and contact persons. The guide “Promovieren am Karlsruher Institut für Technologie (KIT)” (German only) provides additional comprehensive information and guidance.



Forms of doing a doctorate

At KIT, there are many ways to do a doctorate. The so-called individual doctorate is the classic form of pursuing a doctorate in Germany. It is characterized in particular by the one-to-one supervision of doctoral researchers by a university member who can serve as supervisor. As a rule, the doctoral researchers themselves find a supervisor and agree with this person on the research topic. The doctoral researchers at KIT are usually involved in a working group and / or research groups and industrial projects. Funding is often provided via individual scholarships or third-party funded projects from industry and research.

KIT’s more than 20 doctoral programs (graduate schools, research training groups etc.) offer the opportunity for doing a doctorate as part of a research program and within the framework of a structured training and supervision concept. The focus of the doctoral programs is to train of doctoral researchers in promising research topics and to support their personal career development and scientific independence.

Another option are binational doctoral degrees (the so-called cotutelle de thèse). In this form, you receive your doctorate from two universities in different countries, which means that you obtain a doctorate awarded by two universities. In principle, doing a binational doctorate is possible at all KIT Departments and with all foreign universities worldwide, provided that the legal framework of the countries and universities involved permit it.

For more information on the forms of doing your doctorate at KIT, see section 1.3 in the e-guide "Promovieren am Karlsruher Institut für Technologie (KIT)", German only.



At KIT you can do your doctorate in the following disciplines: 

  • Natural sciences 
  • Engineering 
  • Economics 
  • The humanities 
  • Social sciences

You can achieve the following academic degrees at the KIT:

Doctor of Engineering (Dr.-Ing.)


Doctor of Engineering Sciences (Dr.-Ing.)


Doctor of Natural Sciences (Dr. rer. nat.)



Doctor of Philosophy (Dr. phil.)


Doctor of Economics (Dr. rer. pol.)


For further information, please visit the websites of the departments and read the respective doctoral regulations.