Female doctoral candidate with a doctoral hat

Doctoral candidates

Information on starting a doctorate at Jena University
Female doctoral candidate with a doctoral hat
Image: Jan-Peter Kasper (University of Jena)

We are happy that you have chosen Friedrich Schiller University Jena for your doctorate or your research stay and wish you a good start at your institute and in the city of Jena!

Doing a doctorate shouldn't involve additional bureaucratic burdens for you. Still there are a few administrative formalities that you have to deal with. We would like to help you so that the steps to take don't seem like a "jungle" to cross. On the following pages, you will find information that will help to guide you.

If you are employed as an academic employee at Jena University, you will find detailed information for the beginning of your doctorate on this website.

Before Arrival

  • Acceptance of the doctoral supervision

    The first step on the way to your doctorate in Jena is the supervisor’s agreement. If you have not yet found a supervisor, you will find information on how to find a supervisor on this website.

  • Visa and entry (only doctoral candidates from non-EU countries)

    If you come from a country outside the EU, the EEA or Switzerland, you must apply for a visa at the German mission abroad in your home countryExternal link. We advise you to apply for a visa for research purposes. For this, you must submit a hosting agreement. You will receive the hosting agreement either from your employer (non-university research institute) or, if you will not have an employment contract, from the Graduate Academy.

    Please contact the Graduate Academy well in advance of your planned arrival (graduierten.akademie@uni-jena.de).

  • Health insurance (only doctoral candidates from non-EU countries)

    For the duration of your stay in Germany, an adequate health insurance is required. Please note that you must have insurance coverage from your first day in Germany. Please find more information about the German health care system hereExternal link. Furthermore, the German diplomatic missions abroadExternal link can inform you about which health insurance must be provided to enter Germany.

    If you have health insurance in another EU or EEA country, you can use it upon arrival in Germany.

  • Finding accommodation

    Due to limited capacities, please make sure to find a room for your stay as early as possible. International doctoral candidates have the possibility of applying for a place in one of the three university guesthouses. Information about the guest houses can be found hereExternal link. Enrolled doctoral candidates can also apply for a room in student housingExternal link.

    You can find more information about "Accomodations in Jena" here.

After Arrival in Jena

  • Registering your adress in Jena

    For stays in Germany that are longer than three months, you are required to register your address with the city administrationExternal link within 14 days upon arrival. You will need an identity document and a confirmation from your landlord ("Wohnungsgeberbescheinigung"), which you will receive from your landlord once you sign the renting contract. For registering your address, you will need to make an appointmentExternal link.

  • Health insurance

    If you have an employment contract with social insurance (monthly salary > 450,- EUR), you can choose which statutory health insurance you want to be insured with (e.g. TKExternal link, AOKExternal link or BarmerExternal link).

    If you do not have an employment contract with social insurance, we recommend that you take out a statutory health insurance as a voluntary member. Alternatively, you can choose a private health insurance instead of a statutory one. If you prefer to have private health insurance, please note that there are significant differences in the services covered. For more information, please see the information on this websiteExternal link.

    If you have health insurance in another EU or EEA country, your health insurance is also valid in Germany. Please contact the health insurance company in your home country for information on necessary formalities and how services can be reimbursed.

  • Supervision agreement

    As soon as you have arrived in Jena, you should contact your supervisor and conclude the written agreement on the supervision of your doctorate, the so-called Supervision Agreement.

    You can find further information here.

  • Admission as a doctoral candidate

    Regardless of whether you are employed at the university or finance your doctorate with a scholarship, you will receive the status "doctoral candidate" by admission through one of the faculties of the University of Jena. To do so, you must first register in the online registration portal doc-inExternal link. There you will find the form "Application for admission as doctoral candidate" with the information on necessary documents to hand in with the application. Please submit the application to the dean's office of your faculty.

    You can find further information here.

  • Opening a bank account (only doctoral candidates from abroad)

    If you are doing your doctorate at University of Jena, we advise you to open a German bank account. There are many different banks in Jena where you can open an account, each with different offers, services and account management fees. To open an account, you need an identity document and the registration certificate of the city (see „Registering your address in Jena“). Non-EU citizens also need a residence permit or visa.

  • Application for a residence permit (only doctoral candidates from non-EU countries)

    International doctoral candidates who do not come from the EU, the European Economic Area or Switzerland must apply for a residence permit at the Foreigners' Registration Office („Ausländerbehörde“). If possible, you should submit the application 12 weeks before your visa expires. The application can be submitted by email or by post. Information on the application process and contact details can be found on the homepage of the Foreigners' Registration OfficeExternal link.

  • Enrolment (optional)

    Doctoral candidates at University of Jena have the possibility to enrol with the university. Enrolment is not compulsory, but it offers a whole range of advantages:

    • thoska-campus card with a cashless payment function
    • Discounts in canteens and cafeterias of the Studierendenwerk ThuringiaExternal link (student services organisation)
    • Student ticketExternal link for free use of public transportation (buses and trams of Verkehrsverbund Mittelthüringen and regional rail services throughout Thuringia)
    • Insurance coverage, i.e. for activities at the University Jena, internships and excursions: legal accident insurance and a recreational accident insurance through the student services organisation
    • Automatic registration at the library and the university computer centre
    • culture ticket: free entrance for exhibitions and other cultural events

    You can find further information here.

  • IT-Service

    All doctoral candidates can have an account with the university computer centre. This account contains:

    If you are not enrolled as a doctoral candidate (see above), please contact the Welcome and Service Desk for Doctoral Candidates and Postdocs to activate your computer centre account.

  • Thoska / Campus card

    The Thuringian university identity card, or thoska, is a multifunction campus card, which allows you to identify yourself as a doctoral candidate of Jena University, use the library, photocopy or scan documents, and pay by card in the canteens and cafeterias.

    If you are not enrolled as a doctoral candidate (see above), please contact the Welcome and Service Desk for Doctoral Candidates and Postdocs to receive your thoska card.

  • Family / Child care

    There are several childcare options for doctoral candidates with children: daycare centres, child minders, the flexible childcare centre on campusExternal link, or babysitters. If you need more information about child care in Jena, do not hesitate to contact the University's Family Office.

  • Qualification offers

    As a doctoral candidate, you will have the opportunity to take part in qualification workshops and classes on various topics like writing and publishing, project management, or good scientific practise. You may find all offered workshops of Graduate Academy and other university institutions hereExternal link.

International Tutoring Service for Doctoral Candidates and Postdocs

The Graduate Academy offers international doctoral candidates and postdocs a free peer-to-peer support service to help you organising your stay in Jena.

  • What are the issues the tutoring service can help me with?
    • questions about entry and stay (visa issues, citizens' service, immigration office)
    • orientation in the city and at the university (search for the right contact person)
    • procedures at University of Jena (admission as a doctoral candidate, enrolment, multimedia centre, computer centre, library)
    • doctorate and family (finding childcare, kindergarten, school)
    • issues and problems of everyday life (finding accomodation, bank accounts, insurances)
  • Who are the tutors?
    Group photograph of the Tutoring Service
    Group photograph of the Tutoring Service
    Image: Christoph Worsch (University of Jena)

    The tutors of Graduate Academy are pursueing their doctorate at University of Jena. They speak English, German, and some other languages.

  • How can I contact the tutoring service?

    Please write an e-mail with your issue to ga-tutor@uni-jena.de. Your contact person is Dr. Alexander Schwarzkopf.


If you will be concluding or have already concluded an employment contract with Friedrich Schiller University, you will find information on the first steps on the way to a doctorate here.


Advise at Welcome and Service Desk for Doctoral Candidates and Postdocs
Advise at Welcome and Service Desk for Doctoral Candidates and Postdocs
Image: Jan-Peter Kasper (University of Jena)

At the Welcome and Service Desk for Doctoral Candidates and Postdocs, assistance and advice are offered to all researchers of Jena University. For example, you can contact us with questions on the following topics:

  • first steps and the course of your doctorate,
  • orientation at the university and in the city,
  • contact to the International Tutoring Service.

You can find us on the ground floor in the House for Young Researchers, Johnannisstraße 13 (vis-à-vis to the cafeteria).

Welcome and Service Desk for Doctoral Candidates and Postdocs

House for Young Researchers "Zur Rosen", Room Ground floor
Johannisstraße 13
07743 Jena

Opening hours:
Monday, Wednesday:
10.00h – 12.00h

Tuesday, Thursday:
10.00h – 12.00h, 14.00h – 16.00h