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Application and Admission

Application and Admission


We currently do not accept applications for our PhD program. The application process for the October 2018 intake will open in January 2018. The application deadline will be March 30th, 2018.


You can find general information on the application process and requirements below. Please note that this page is currently being updated an will be complete by the end of December 2017.

General Requirements for Admission

If you would like to apply to the PhD program at RGS Econ, please note the following requirements:

(1) Applicants should have an excellent academic record and should have obtained or nearly completed a  Master's degree in Economics or related disciplines, such as business administration, mathematics, statistics, phyiscs, engineerig etc. The degree program should include a written thesis, written or oral examinations, and at least two years of course work. Successful participation in our PhD program does generally require previous exposure to subjects like econometrics, micro-, and macroeconomics. This background in economics should be documented in your application (e.g. with relevant publications, transcripts). RGS Econ does not accept applications from students who only hold a Bachelor's degree. 

(2)strong background in quantitative methods is necessary for a successful application. This background has to be documented - for example by course work in mathematics, statistics, or advanced economics in your academic transcript and/or by results from the GRE test.

For applicants without a German secondary school diploma ("Abitur"), a GRE(Graduate Record Examinations, General Test format), a GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test), or any other internationally accepted test that measures basic verbal, mathematical, and analytical skills is highly recommended. Typically we expect candidates to score in the top 20 percent in the quantitative sections of the test. For details please see ( or  ( 

(3)  All courses, lectures, and seminars at RGS Econ are held in English. Therefore, a "Test of English as a Foreign Language" (TOEFL) or any other international accepted English language test with excellent results is highly recommended for all applicants except for those who 

- are native English speakers 
- can prove at least six months of studies at an English-spoken university 
- possess a German "Abitur" 
For further information about the TOEFL test please click here (

(4) Knowledge of German is not essential, although students are encouraged to learn and improve their language skills. Language classes are offered at the participating universities of the program.

(5) There is no age restriction.

(6) There is no application fee.

Application Manual

A complete application consists of application documents provided by you and at least two letters of recommendation from university professors or lecturers. 

(1) The application documents can be sent via postal mail or email, as a single .pdf attachement in the form [lastname]_[firstname].pdf . We will inform you of the receipt of the application documents via email to the address you provide in the personal data part of the application (see below). We do not accept application materials that are sent in separate installments.


Mailing Adress:

RGS Econ c/o RWI
Postfach 10 30 54

45030 Essen

(2) Please ask your referees to use the following form for the letters of recommendation. These are sent directly to us by the referee via postal mail or email, as instructed on the form. :

Download recommendation form as .docx (Fill out, save and print or email) 
Download recommendation form as .pdf (Fill out and print or email)

If we have received your application documents, we will notify you of the arrival of the letters of recommendation via email.

**** Please Note *****
Make sure to contact potential referees well ahead of the application deadline. Also, submit your application documents well ahead of the deadline, if possible, as we may contact very promising applicants before the deadline.


Helge Braun, PhD
Ruhr Graduate School in Economics (RGS Econ)
Hohenzollernstr. 1-3
45128 Essen

Tel.: +49 (0)201 8149 512
Fax: +49 (0)201 8149 200