A hand is drawing a question mark.We know the application process may seem overwhelming in the beginning. To help you, we have collected some of the most frequently asked questions on our scholarships and the application processes.

FAQs Eligibility and Requirements

If I am interested in applying for the study/research grant to complete a degree in Germany, do I need to be admitted or accepted into a German university by the time of application?

No, as German universities’ admission deadlines are later than our deadline, it’s often impossible and therefore not necessary to be admitted to a German university at the time of application.

I am not an American citizen. Can I still apply for the study or research grant?

Applicants should be US citizens or permanent residents. If you are a foreign national currently living in the US, you must fulfill the following requirements:

  • Applicants for Long-Term Grants (over 6 months): you have gained your last degree in the US or will be gaining it before taking up your scholarship.
  • Applicants for Short-Term Grants (6 months and less): you have been living in the US for a minimum of one year and your current residence is in the US.

How much German do I need to know?

German language ability is not a requirement for this grant, however students should demonstrate language skills commensurate with their study and research needs.

FAQs Terms of Award

Are scholarships available for online courses?

No, DAAD does not support online courses.

Can I receive a graduate scholarship more than once?

This depends on which DAAD scholarship you've received previously:

  • Study Scholarships for Graduates of All Disciplines: No.
  • Research Grants - One-Year Grants: No.
  • Research Grants - Short-Term Grants: Yes. You can receive one grant per 12-month period.

Can the funding start on April 1st, instead of October 1st?

No, scholarships must start on October 1st.

Is it acceptable to apply to a program which is taught completely or primarily in the English language (but at a German university)?

Yes, as a matter of fact, German universities offer a lot of Master degree programs that are taught in English, and you are eligible to apply for those programs to receive a grant.

Is it acceptable to apply to a program which is offered jointly by multiple universities (including one German university and other European/non-European countries)?

We may consider it for funding, if the study abroad part (i.e. outside of Germany) is less than 25% of the total award period. The stay abroad will be only permitted if it is a required part of the curriculum in the curriculum of the study program. It should not be conducted in the home country.

FAQs Application Process

How does the application process via the DAAD Portal work?

Applicants must apply online via the DAAD portal before submitting THREE paper copies of their application. You can do this by following these steps:

  1. Select your chosen scholarship via the links provided on our scholarship pages or via the search engine on www.funding-guide.de
  2. Register as a user
  3. Download and fill in the application form electronically; make sure you save it.
  4. Upload all required documents (the portal will guide you as to what they are)
  5. Print out the required number of copies of your application once the system has sent it to you (this may take up to a couple of hours)
  6. Submit all copies to DAAD in New York by the given deadline.

Please note that applying online is a requirement and we cannot accept any applications that have not been submitted online first.

What happens if the deadline falls on a Sunday or Public Holiday?

In this case, the paper application is must be postmarked by the following Monday/business day. However, please note that application materials must be submitted to the online MOVE portal by the deadline, regardless of what day of the week it is.

Who should I submit my application to?

The paper version of your application needs to be sent to the DAAD New York office (Exception: visual/performing artists should send it to Germany). You will find more information here and, once you've uploaded your application, on the DAAD Portal.

Please make sure you have submitted your application online first by the deadline before sending your copies. You will find all required information on the portal during the online application process.

How long should my project description be?

The project description will differ from scholarship to scholarship. You can find an indication of the suggested length in the Applicant Checklist for your scholarship by referring to the General FAQs and the guidelines here.

What are the requirements for reference?

We recommend that referees fill out the DAAD reference form. 3 total copies of signed reference form from a university professor in your major field (ie signed original + 2 copies of signed original) - All 3 copies must be placed in individual envelopes, and included in the complete application package. - Your reference must send a scan of the signed form via email to gradscholar(at)daad.org.

If you are applying for a “Research Grant-Doctoral Programmes in Germany”: Please note that this grant requires two references. All other conditions as outlined above still apply.

The reference form is available on the DAAD portal, also called referee's report



I am a recent graduate and currently not enrolled in a university. Can I submit recommendation letters from my employer or a non-academic person?

We prefer letters from North American professors. If it is absolutely impossible, you may submit a letter from an employer or non-academic person.

Is there a specific format requirement for proposals?

We do not have specific format requirements. Double or single line spacing is up to your personal preference. Our general guideline is to be considerate toward the reviewer - i.e. a font that's not too small (min 10 point, 12 pt is usually the most comfortable) and of a basic, non-fancy, easy to read style; make sure there are some margins on the side for them to make notes. If you feel you have explained things well and clearly in less space, going under the limit is always okay.

The deadline for admission to the German university I want to attend is not until later, what do I submit for proof of contact?

Those who are applying to begin a full degree course of study at a German university do not need to submit proof of contact in their scholarship application. Later, if you are awarded the scholarship, you must prove that you have been admitted before your departure.