Prerequisite for admission to the doctoral studies
- Very good English skills: we strongly recommend every candidate to pass an internationally recognised English language exam (TOEFL, IELTS, CAE or CPE test), and submit a proof of English language competency with the application,
- a relevant Diploma or Magister degree with a minimum of eight semesters of study, or
a B.A. degree with 180 ECTS credits AND an M.A. degree with 120 ECTS credits (300 ECTS credits in total).
International diplomas: Applicants of all nationalities are invited to apply to SFU. Nevertheless, applicants from countries outside EEA or EU might have a little more (paper)work when applying to our PhD programme. Therefore, the Doctoral Office strongly encourages every prospect student to get certified English translations of their diplomas and certificates.
Selection procedure for admission
Applicants for the doctoral programme submit their documents (academic degrees, proof of psychotherapy training or psychotherapeutic knowledge, curriculum vitae, publications if applicable, draft of the dissertation project) to the doctoral committee. The committee decides on the selection of applicants according to formal and content-related criteria.
- the verification of previous studies (Diploma, Magister, or B.A. plus M.A. with a total of 300 ECTS credits),
- Any previous academic publications,
- Psychotherapy training or previous psychotherapeutic experience (e.g. propaedeutic certificate/ Propädeutikum) or psychotherapeutic self-experience,
- The quality of the written presentation of the dissertation project,
- The closeness of the dissertation to the research focus of the Faculty of Psychotherapy Science or the supervisor in question.
Furthermore, the doctoral committee decides on admission interviews with applicants and on the recognition of achievements in another doctoral programme completed outside the SFU.
Proof of psychotherapeutic self-experience
Applicants who have not completed a psychotherapy training must provide proof of 60 hours of psychotherapeutic self-experience with a registered psychotherapist as a proof of a holistic understanding of how psychotherapy works. Out of these 60 hours, at least 30 hours must be individual self-awareness, the remaining 30 hours may be group self-awareness. However, all 60 hours may also be completed as individual self-awareness.
Recommendations regarding the choice of dissertation topic
If the doctoral studies and method-specific training begin at the same time, it is recommended not to choose a dissertation topic that requires practical knowledge of the method.
Admission requirement for full studies
We expressly point out that we only accept full studies as admission requirements, i.e. conventional Diploma or Magister studies with a minimum duration of eight semesters, or a B.A. plus M.A. with a total of at least ten semesters study duration and a total of 300 ECTS credits. Exceptions to this are not possible; in particular, we do not accept Master’s degree programmes with so-called B.A. equivalents, i.e. training from the non-university or non-faculty sector which has been credited by the institution awarding the Master’s title as a substitute for a missing B.A. degree.
This also applies to M.Sc. degrees from Austrian Danube University Krems, as can be seen from the following letter: “Due to the current legal situation (and in accordance with a decision by the Austrian Constitutional Court), the completion of university courses – and such are the studies offered by the University of Continuing Education Krems – does not entitle the holder to doctoral studies according to the Universities Act 2002″. (Dr. Erwin Neumeister, Head of the Department for University Law, Federal Ministry of Science and Research).