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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Work Contracts

As a rule, scientists and scholars are offered fixed-time contracts at Humboldt. The legal basis for this practice is the Hochschulrahmengesetz (University Framework Law), which applies to all academic and scientific institutions and non-university research institutions in Germany, and the Teilzeit- und Befristungsgesetz (Part-Time and Fixed-Time Law), which sets valid standards for fixed-time contracts.

The Hochschulrahmengesetz sets the limits on contracts. A work contract offered to a person who has successfully completed studies must not exceed the limit of six years, unless valid grounds can be given. All other contracts concluded with a German university or non-university research centre on completion of university studies count towards this limit.

If a doctoral degree is obtained at a point before the end of the six-year span, an extension for an additional six years may be granted in addition to the unused time budget in the first six-year period. Time spent on doctoral studies in and outside Germany counts towards the first six-year limit. Time left from the first phase may be used in the post-doctoral phase, up to the six-year limit.

In any event, contracts must be concluded in writing before the candidate starts work.

Please keep in mind that in addition to German labour laws, immigration law requirements must be observed. If you need a residence or work permit, you must apply for these in advance. The same procedure is required if you wish to prolong the time you work in Germany.

An der Universität sind alle Verwaltungsvorschriften, Dienstvereinbarungen und aktuellen Hinweise, die das Arbeitsverhältnis berühren, im Internet zu finden. Zugang haben Sie allerdings nur von den Universitätsservern.

Ms. Angelika Krüger will answer any questions related to the work of a scholar, scientist, or student assistant.


Abteilung für Personal und Personalentwicklung
(Department of Personnel and Personnel Development)
Frau Angelika Krüger
Tel. ++49 (0)30 2093-2462