IDEA-League Research Grant

Logo IDEA-League



Elina Krause

Incoming Student Service / IDEA League Netzwerkkoordinatorin


+49 241 80 90831



What is the IDEA League?

IDEA League is a collaborative network between the leading European Universities of Science and Technology:

Delft University of Technology

ETH Zürich - Swiss Federal Institue of Technology

Chalmers University of Technology

Politecnico di Milano

RWTH Aachen University

Since its foundation in 1999, the IDEA League has promoted collaboration between the universities named above through joint degree programs, research initiatives, joint strategy papers, and quality management initiatives.

IDEA League Research Grant

IDEA League grants promote research collaboration between the participating universiteis. Bachelor's, Master's, and Diplom students and doctoral candidates are eligible to apply for these grants.

The grant scheme enables students to undertake a research visit to an IDEA League university in order to do research, for example, in the context of a final thesis or dissertation. Grantholders do not attend courses and seminars at the host institution.

The IDEA League research grant is awarded on a competitive basis. The amount of the grant is 400 to 600 euros per month, depending on the amount and quality of received applications per application round. There is no restrictions for the use, and this amount is not expected to cover all costs of the exchange.

Application Documents

The following application documents must be submitted per e-mail in English:

  • Application form
  • Letter of motivation
  • CV/Resume including information on study or research abroad projects undertaken so far
  • Research proposal by the supervising professor (signed) at the host university, including a description of the applicant's responsibilities
  • Recommendation letter from the supervising professor at RWTH Aachen
  • Transcript of records (from CAMPUS)

Please note the following:

  • International Master's students in the first or second semester of study are not eligible to apply for the IDEA League research grant.
  • In order to offer the opportunity of studying abroad to maximum number of students, students with no previous study-abroad experience might be preferred.
  • You have already started your exchange in ETH Zürich, and are looking for possible scholarships – changing the registered student status in ETH is not possible. In case you are not registered as IDEA League exchange student, you cannot receive IDEA League research grant.


Deadlines for the applications:

February 1 (Exchange starts earliest from May 1)

June 1 (Exchange starts earliest from September 1)

October 1 (Exchange starts earliest from January 1)


The Application Process

  • In a first step, the applicant decides on the research area in which to undertake the research project and then which IDEA League partner university would be suitable.
  • Subsequently, the applicant is to perform preparatory online research, via the (potential) host institution's website, to find out about possible research projects or identify research areas within which the project may be conducted. There is a database for this at ETH Zürich. There are also instructions for projects at Chalmers University.
  • In a next step, the applicant gets in touch with contact person they researched at the host university. If contacting them via email, it is best to explain your motivation and to name a time frame, in which you would like to complete the project, along with your resume, a current transcript of records, and if available, documentation of practical experiences such as work certificates or a recommendation letter.
  • After you have found a supervisor, you can submit the application documents for the IDEA League Research Grant to the RWTH International Office.
  • Applications can be on three deadlines. After each of the deadlines, a selection committee who decides on the successful candidates, will review all applications. Successful candidates will receive the letter of acceptance approximately three weeks after the deadline.
  • It is also possible to apply for an IDEA League exchange student status without the scholarship. Same application documents must be submitted three months before the start of the exchange.
  • Nomination for the grant should be received at least two months before the start of the exchange; in case student would need a Visa for Switzerland, this deadline is extended to three months. For a problem free application process, please consider the following deadlines:
    February 1 (Exchange starts earliest from May 1)
    June 1 (Exchange starts earliest from September 1)
    October 1 (Exchange starts earliest from January 1)
  • The International Office pays the grant to the successful applicant. During the research abroad period, grant holders remain enrolled at their home universities.
  • Upon return to RWTH Aachen each student has to provide a brief report in English including a photograph of themselves in the host lab to their home supervisor and to the International Office of RWTH Aachen. The photograph may be used for publication in RWTH media. Please use the template on the IDEA League website under testimonials.
  • Students participating in the grant scheme will be listed on the IDEA web following their research stay.


IDEA League is using to manage student projects suitable for the student grant scheme. On following page you can find an overview of the projects.