IDEA League Grants for Short-Term Research Stays

  A person stands at a machine and performs an experiment © Martin Braun Logo IDEA-League  

Target Group

  • Bachelor’s and master’s students and doctoral candidates at RWTH Aachen University.

Not eligible:

  • International master’s students in their first or second semester of study.
  • Grants cannot be used in combination with Erasmus+, PROMOS, or UNITECH scholarships.

Purpose of the Grant

To financially support RWTH students’ research stays abroad at IDEA League partner universities.

Grant Amount and Funding Period

  • 300 to 600 euros per month, depending on the number of approved applications per application round.
  • There are no restrictions for the use of the grant, and it is not expected to cover all the costs of the exchange.
  • Research stays from two weeks to six months are allowed, with preference given to short stays.
    Important: At ETH Zürich the minimum stay for Bachelor and Master students is 91 days, no exceptions.

Selection Criteria

  • Excellent academic performance
  • The overall quality of the planned project, including a possible strategic value for RWTH
  • Students’ academic motivation and their prospects for career advancement
  • Other qualifications

Organization of the Research Stay

  • Applicant must organize their planned research stay at the partner university independently before applying for the grant. If you are not sure where to start, please see our practical guidelines.
  • Remember to plan well ahead. We recommend starting the process at least six months before the start of your stay.
  • To apply for an IDEA League grant, you will first need to find a research project and supervisor at the partner university as well as a supervisor at RWTH.
  • In addition to organizing your research stay and applying for the scholarship, you also need to apply at the partner university as a visiting student. The partner universities will provide you with all the information you need about the internal application procedures. For further information, please contact the respective partner university at , ETH Zurich, , , or .

Application Documents

The following application documents must be submitted in English no later than the deadline via the Incoming Students Online Portal:

  • Application form – please register via the Incoming Students Online Portal and use the form “IDEA League Short-term Research Exchange Grant”
  • Letter of motivation
  • CV/Resume including information about any semesters or research projects completed abroad to date
  • Research proposal (signed) by the supervising professor at the host university, including a description of the applicant’s responsibilities and tasks during their stay
  • Recommendation letter from the supervising professor at RWTH
  • Transcript of records

All documents can be addressed to IDEA League. You can expect to hear feedback on your application about two weeks after the submission deadline.

Application Deadlines

  • February 1 (recommended start of the exchange May 1 at the earliest)
  • June 1 (recommended start of the exchange September 1 at the earliest)
  • October 1 (recommended start of the exchange January 1 at the earliest)

Please note: Differing application deadlines for Chalmers University

Please also note that the grant application is independent of your research stay and is just one of the many steps you need to be able to finish before you can start your exchange. You might need a visa, more time to find housing, or consider the partner university´s internal application deadlines. We recommend starting the process at least six months before the planned start of your stay.

Grant Report

Students, who have received the IDEA League grant, need to submit a short report after finishing their research stay.

IDEA League Short-term Research Exchange Grant holders coming to RWTH

If you have received an IDEA League Short-term Research Exchange Grant from one of our partner universities, we advise you to as soon as possible before starting your exchange stay. You will need to register your stay at RWTH by applying as a Visiting Project Student, and we recommend you do so at least two to three months before the start of your stay.



I have found a project at short notice but can no longer apply for the grant by the deadline. What should I do?

As mentioned before, grants and research stays are independent of each other. You can finance your stay in different ways. You must, however, be sure you will be able to apply to your host university in time to allow you to start your visit there as planned. Please get in touch with your host university as soon as possible for more details.

I missed the last grant application deadline, and my agreed-upon stay abroad is scheduled to start before the next round. What should I do?

You can still apply for the grant after you have already begun your stay. If you are awarded a grant, it can also be paid out retroactively if the research stay is still in progress after the submission deadline.

How can I find a project or supervisor?

Please read our practical guidelines for tips on that.

How will I receive credit for my stay at RWTH?

Before planning your research stay abroad, please consult your faculty´s coordinator for outgoing students about the rules and to get practical tips to ensure you will later receive credit at RWTH for your time and work abroad.


Elina Krause

Incoming Student Service/IDEA League Network Coordinator