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Doctorate

Doctorate

The Hochschule für Musik und Tanz Köln is authorized to confer doctoral degrees to anyone studying in a department with an academic chair (currently: musicology, music pedagogy, dance studies, musicians’ health). Once students complete the doctorate program they are awarded the title Doctor of Philosophy (Dr. phil.), the highest academic degree awarded in Europe.

Research projects under the supervision of academic professors at the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz Köln can be conducted in all subjects of the doctorate programs. In particular, the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz Köln supports innovative and practice-relevant research endeavors as well as interdisciplinary project designs. In addition to receiving support from doctoral advisors, all doctoral students jointly present their work during research and doctorate symposia to discuss their thesis.

Steps Toward the Doctorate Degree

1.    Admission to the doctorate program
2.    Completing program requirements and a dissertation pursuant to the program guidelines
3.    Final oral examination (disputation)

The admission requirements for the doctorate program and the number of credits that must be completed vary according to the each student’s previous academic achievements and degrees. Complete information you can find in the doctorate program regulations. 

General admission requirements include adequate spoken and written German language proficiency. Additional admission requirements are:

  • Submitting a 20,000 to 26,000 (max.) word proposal for the planned dissertation. The proposal should include the following: dissertation title, explanation of topic choice, approach and methods applied, description of expected results, timeline (download: Richtlinien Dissertationsexposé HfMT Köln.pdf). Dissertations must be written following academic research guidelines and must make a relevant, independent contribution to academic Research.
  • Confirmation from a professor at the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz Köln stating he/she is willing to advise the doctoral student. Those interested in the doctorate program should contact a suitable professor to discuss the program and whether or not that professor will act as the student’s advisor.

The doctoral committee decides which applicants to accept into the doctorate program. After completing the academic requirements and the dissertation, doctoral candidates may register for the doctorate qualifying procedure. This includes an evaluation of the dissertation by the doctoral advisor and another faculty member from the department. Based on this evaluation, the doctoral committee decides whether to accept or reject the dissertation and the grade for the dissertation. If the dissertation is accepted, the final step in the examination process is the disputation.

The lifeblood of academia is questioning, reflection, research – and communication. In order to ensure that research results are accessible to everyone and to generate academic discourse, all institutions of higher education and universities require that dissertations be published. Our doctoral students must publish their dissertations themselves. Only once the dissertation has been published will the student receive the doctoral diploma with the seal of the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz Köln and the right to use the title of Doctor.