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PhD and Postdoc


The Department of Mathematics and Computer Science awards the academic degree of Dr. rer. nat. (doctor rerum naturalium / Doktor der Naturwissenschaften / = PhD in natural sciences) according to departmental guidelines and regulations. The PhD provides a special scientific qualification exceeding the regular university degree. This is achieved by profound research work which includes a scientific thesis (dissertation) and an examination colloquium (disputation) in the PhD field of Mathematics and Computer Science. The PhD concludes either a student’s postgraduate studies (Aufbaustudium) or PhD studies (Promotionsstudium).

On 1 December 2021 new PhD regulations entered into force. They differ from the former PhD regulations in the following points:

  • Candidates holding a Bachelor’s degree in one of the PhD relevant subjects can be admitted to PhD proceedings after passing a “Feststellungsprüfung” (entrance examination) in their area of specialisation and the adjoining subjects.
  • Restrictions concerning the subject of the oral examination have been lifted.
  • Doctoral candidates/Postgraduates who are neither registered students nor employees at the Freie Universität Berlin need to enrol here as PhD students.
  • A PhD can be obtained in cooperation with foreign universities.
  • a publication-based dissertation is now possible 
Vacant positions of the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science are usually announced in the FU Stellenanzeiger.

Postdoc / Habilitation
= postdoctoral university degree with lecture qualification

The Habilitation (postdoctoral university degree with lecture qualification) provides the qualification for scientific teaching at universities (=Lehrbefähigung) in the chosen subject (=Habilitationsfach). Possible subjects at this faculty are mathematics or computer science. Demands on candidates are:

  1. The submission of either an all-embracing monograph (Habilitationsschrift) which must be a significant scientific contribution exceeding the standards of a dissertation, or a publication of one’s latest research results which represents an equivalent to the above “Habilitationsschrift”.
  2. A public lecture in the chosen subject, followed by a scientific discussion.
  3. Documented lecturing activity (Lehrtätigkeit) at a scientific university in a subject relevant for the postdoctoral university degree.

Habilitation procedures follow the Habilitation Regulations of 4 October 1999.