University of Colorado, Department of Germanic and Slavic Languages and Literatures

Helmut Mueller-Sievers

Our innovative PhD in German studies is designed so that students can complete their course work and their dissertation in four years ( The idea behind this shortening of time to degree is to invite not only applicants interested in an academic career but also applicants who may want to pursue careers in government, business, and the not-for-profit sector. In Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and many other European countries, it is a strongly held conviction that a doctorate demonstrates to employers intellectual independence, superior research and writing skills, the perseverance and ingenuity to complete an original piece of scholarship, and deep familiarity with a different culture. We believe that these qualities are equally valuable in the twenty-first-century American economy and indeed in the global marketplace. We also believe that a German studies PhD that includes experiences such as graduate-level internships can enhance the interdisciplinary preparation of students who wish to pursue a career in academia.

The shortened time to degree of our PhD program will not compromise its academic rigor. To this end, our program provides intensive and personalized mentoring, directed reading advice, and clinics devoted to dissertation and conference paper writing, digital and archival research, oral presentation, and interview preparation. Our PhD strongly emphasizes interdisciplinary work within a secondary concentration area of the student’s choice, and includes one year spent abroad at our partner universities of Göttingen and Regensburg or at other leading institutions in the German-speaking world. A wide range of graduate-level course offerings is designed to ensure content coverage and to move research projects into publishable scholarship. Our expanded graduate faculty includes scholars in disciplines such as political science, comparative literature, Jewish studies, business, and library science.

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