Frequently Asked Questions About PROMOS Abroad Scholarships
FAQ About the Requirements
I am a doctoral candidate. Can I apply for PROMOS?
It depends on the type of stay. Semesters abroad, internships, and research stays conducted by doctoral candidates cannot be funded with PROMOS. There is one exception: doctoral candidates in medicine. The DAAD offers doctoral candidates in other fields a special scholarship. Furthermore study trips conducted by doctoral candidates can receive the same PROMOS funding as when conducted by students.
Does citizenship play a role in eligibility for PROMOS funding?
All regularly enrolled students at RWTH can participate in the PROMOS program regardless of their citizenship. However, no stays are funded in a student's home country. Home countries are those countries, where a student/doctoral candidate has spent the majority of at least five years.
What type of stays are funded?
PROMOS is awarded as an individual scholarship for semester stays, internships, and research. Research includes stays for completing final papers – including at companies – and academic papers such as project papers. Groups can also receive PROMOS funding for study trips.
What duration of stays is funded?
Study stays and stays to complete research work must last at least a month to be funded with PROMOS. Internships must last at least six weeks. All three types of stays can be funded for a maximum duration of six months.
My stay abroad will be almost over by the application deadline. Can I still apply?
Yes, you can apply as long as your stay has not been completed by the application deadline.
My stay abroad is planned but I don't have an official acceptance yet from the host institution. Can I still apply for a PROMOS scholarship?
No. You can only apply for funding once you have a confirmation from the host institution abroad and the time period has been determined. If you were nominated for an exchange placement via RWTH, the nomination from RWTH suffices as confirmation.
What types of double funding are excluded?
It is generally not permitted to obtain double funding from German public funds. Here, it is essential to clearly define the purpose of the funding. You cannot receive PROMOS funding if you already receive funding from a public body for the purpose of study abroad. It is possible, however, to obtain funding from private sources in addition to your PROMOS grant. For further information, refer to the Scholarship Details section.
You can simultaneously receive scholarships, which finance studies at RWTH Aachen and are not related to the planned stay abroad, for example the Germany Scholarship or NRW scholarship, together with PROMOS.
You must notify other funding public funding bodies if you are receiving a scholarship and PROMOS simultaneously.
Can I apply for a PROMOS scholarship if I receive BAföG funding for abroad?
Yes, you can simultaneously receive funding from PROMOS and BAföG abroad. However, it is possible that your BAföG abroad stipend will be adjusted accordingly. Upon approval of your application, you must inform the BAföG office that you have been granted a PROMOS scholarship.
I have received a PROMOS or Voss scholarship once before. Can I apply again?
Yes, you can do so if the funding period was less than six months or if you are now in a new stage of your studies, for example if you have transferred from a Bachelor's to a Master's course of study.
FAQ About the Application
When can I apply?
There are two deadlines: March 15 and September 15. You can apply by the March 15 deadline for stays planned to take place in the year of application, whereas you can apply by September 15 for stays in to be completed in the year of application or the subsequent year. The important thing is that the stay is either planned for the future or still running by the date you apply. Stays that have already been completed by March 15 or September 15 deadline can therefore not be funded. The application portal will be open starting one month before each of the respective deadlines, meaning you can apply for your stay as early as February 15 or August 15.
What do I need to include about the duration of my stay abroad? The entire duration I am abroad or just the duration of the semester/internship?
Under duration of stay you must write the semester or the period reserved for the internship/research. If you are independently extending your stay, this period cannot be considered for funding. However, please make sure to inform us about any changes to your stay/project as originally planned.
Do I have to name the Germany Scholarship as a funding institution?
Yes, please include all institutions, from which you are simultaneously receiving funding or from which you have applied for funding for your stay abroad.
Do I submit my application documents (resume, etc.) in English or German?
You can submit your application documents in either German or English. You can choose one of the two languages when completing the application form.
How long should my statement of motivation be?
The online form allows a limited number of characters to answer the individual questions about your motivation.
What do I need to pay attention to in my statement of motivation?
You can use the following questions to orient yourself when writing about your motivation:
- Why did you choose this country/university/company? Explain the technical and personal reasons for this choice.
- Can you describe your stay abroad project look in technical terms, that is, in relation to your studies or research at RWTH?
- How is the stay embedded in your studies (curriculum, professional goals, etc.)? In which way do your studies/research benefit from it?
- What language, cultural, intercultural skills do you already have? What experiences are you hoping for during your stay abroad?
- To what extent did you already research your host country, familiarizing yourself with its culture and its language?
- Why would you be a suitable ambassador for RWTH?
How can the project's focus on sustainability determined?
We follow a broad definition of “sustainability.” For orientation, please refer to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development of the United Nations. The agenda is based on 17 sustainability goals. These should provide you with many ideas on how to deisgn your stay abroad in such a way so as to have a sustainability focus. The greater this focus, the more you improve your chances of selection. A few possibilities for “making your stay sustainable” are outlined below:
- Attending courses on sustainability and sustainability-related topics
- Conducting research on a sustainability topic
- Internship with an organization or company or organizational department that is concerned with sustainability, a sustainability-related topic, or which promotes and advances a sustainability agenda
- Volunteering activities in the host country that contribute to sustainability
- Choice of an environmentally friendly means of transport to the destination and back
- Creation of added value for German society based on your study/research abroad experience
FAQ About Documentation/Proof
I have not received an official nomination letter from RWTH. What can I submit instead?
If you have not received an official nomination letter, you can upload a screenshot of the confirmation of your stay abroad from RWTH, which you received by email.
Which transcript of records do I submit?
Please download your current transcript of records from RWTHonline. If you are enrolled in the first semester of your Master's course of study, please upload the transcript of records of your Bachelor's degree.
Where can I find my academic progress certificate?
You can find the academic progress certificate in RWTHonline. Please note you need the academic progress certificate and not the certificate of enrollment.
Do I need to submit proof that I speak the local language or working language?
You must submit proof of the agreed upon working language, which may differ from the local language. If you speak not only the working language but also the local language, we recommend submitting proof of these skills.
What type of proof of language skills do I need to submit?
Proof of language skills includes a language certificate, for example TOEFL, a certificate from the Language Center, or your Abitur certificate. If you are a native speaker, please include corresponding proof of your citizenship.
I don't have all of the documentation. Can I submit some documentation at a later date?
You should upload the completed application by the application deadline. Incomplete applications will not be considered. You can upload documentation up until the application deadline but it is better to wait until you have all of your documents and to complete your application then.
FAQ About Other Topics
What are my chances of being awarded the scholarship?
On average, applicants have a 30 percent chance of being selected for funding. Please note that this is just a rought estimate, and that they chance for selection varies for each selection round. Generally, your chance depends on various factors, such as the available budget and, especially, your own academic performance compared to that of your fellow candidates. To find out more about the selection criteria, please refer to RWTH's PROMOS web pages.
When do I find out if I am receiving funding or not?
The selection meeting is held about six weeks after the application deadline. This means you can expect an answer six to eight weeks after the application deadline. Please refrain from asking about the status of your application until then.
Can I extend my stay and have it funded by PROMOS?
No. Unfortunately, an extension is not possible on principle.
Do I have to earn a certain number of ECTS while abroad?
For those studying abroad with the PROMOS scholarship program, we recommend you take courses amounting to 20 ECTS per semester.
The examination boards responsible for the respective degree programs at RWTH decide which courses and exams students have taken abroad can be recognized and credited towards a degree. For detailed information, please get in touch with the responsible international coordinators at your faculty or department. RWTH has a system in place to help convert foreign grades in a way that is transparent, fair, and consistent throughout the University.
Some faculties and departments have lists of courses at partner universities that RWTH has recognized in the past. Find out more about this at your faculty.
Where can I find information about the safety of my destination ?
Please refer to the Federal Foreign Office for information on the safety of your chosen destination. No funding will be awarded for stays in countries or regions where the security risk is deemed critical or where travel warnings are in place.
Can I submit the required documents after my stay via e-mail?
Please upload your documents to this website. You do not need to submit them in person or send them by regular mail.
Can I get a scholarship certificate?
Yes, as soon as you have submitted all the required documents after your stay, you are entitled to a scholarship certificate. If you are interested, we will issue such a certificate.