General Info

  • Faculty working with students: 19
  • Students: 26
  • Students receiving Financial Aid: 100%
  • Part time study available: No
  • Test required: No GRE test required. Non-native speakers of English will need to take the TOEFL or IELTS to demonstrate English language proficiency.
  • Application terms: Fall
  • Application deadline: December 13
Application Info



Directors of Graduate Admission:

Directors of Graduate Studies:

The Carolina-Duke Graduate Program in German Studies
Duke University
Box 90256
Durham, NC 27708-0256
Phone: (919) 660-3160

Program Description

The Carolina-Duke Graduate Program in German Studies is a fully merged graduate program, granting the PhD in German Studies, with a joint admissions process and a single diploma bearing the names of both Duke University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Its organizing principle is a careful combination of disciplinary rigor and interdisciplinary flexibility that recognizes the fundamental interrelation of all the cultural expressions of societies where the German language is spoken.

Taking full advantage of the intellectual, educational, and cultural resources of two of the finest universities in the nation, the program features an advantageous combination of individual attention in small classes and a close connection to the broader communities of literature, cultural studies, and German Studies at Duke University and at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The core German Studies faculty represent all fields of the discipline, including literature and culture from 1000 to the present, gender and sexuality studies, German-Jewish studies, science studies, critical race theory, film and media studies, literary theory and poetics, political theory, philosophy, and intellectual history. Multiple program options are available to students, and interdisciplinary work is strongly encouraged.

Admission is highly competitive and limited to about five students a year. Duke University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill are committed to offering six years of full funding, including tuition, to admitted students. Students take courses full time in their first year of study; in subsequent years they acquire teaching experience at both a private (Duke) and a public (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill) university.


Application Information

Application Terms Available: Fall

Application Deadline
To assure full consideration, completed applications should be submitted by December 13.

Applicants for The Carolina-Duke Graduate Program in German Studies must use the University of North Carolina Graduate School's electronic application:

The single admissions process for the joint program will ensure that incoming students matriculate fully at both universities.

Department-Specific Application Requirements (submitted through online application)

Statement of Purpose Guidelines
In order to help the Admissions Committee assess how well your interests and goals fit with our graduate program, please provide a statement of purpose of approximately 650 to 2,000 words. At the top of your statement please insert a brief description (20 keywords or fewer) of your specific research interests. In addition, please discuss your goals in pursuing the Carolina-Duke German Studies Ph.D your previous study abroad experience(s) and the trajectory of your academic career thus far.

Writing Sample
Please upload a single writing sample of approximately 7,000 to 8,000 words that represents your very best academic writing. Typically, this is an essay previously submitted as an academic requirement in a humanities course of relevance to German Studies. It should make an interpretive argument supported by evidence from one or more literary texts or other cultural media. You may submit a sample in either English or German; however, we strongly encourage you to submit a paper in your native language. If neither is your native language, choose either of these two languages over which you exercise the greatest mastery. The goal of the writing sample is to demonstrate your intellectual capabilities, not merely your English or German language proficiency.

For further information, contact Professor Kata Gellen ( and Professor Inga Pollmann (

We strongly encourage you to review additional department-specific application guidance from the program to which you are applying: Departmental Application Guidance