Coronavirus: Current information of the TUM-GS

To limit the spread of the new coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) specific measures at TUM are in place that also affect the events and services offered by the TUM Graduate School.

After June 2, 2020 TUM gradually resumes its on-campus operations - maintaining, however, existing restrictions regarding physical contact and observing essential preventive measures. Scientific research and laboratory work may also be conducted within TUM facilities. However, all necessary safety regulations and prevention measures must be followed. Doctoral candidates are kindly asked to contact their supervisors for questions about on-campus workplace arrangements. 

Critical information and notices of the TUM-GS in brief

Based on the current TUM regulations to limit the spread of the coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2), following directives are applicable to the TUM-GS. Detailed information can be found below under "detailed information of the TUM-GS". 

  • All Kick-off seminars until end of September are cancelled.
  • In order to respond to the changing circumstances caused be the coronavirus, decisions about whether transferable skills courses will take place will be made 3 weeks prior to the course date. Registrations for new courses will now open 4 weeks prior to the course date. Online course offering will be extended on a regular basis.   
  • Please contact your Graduate Center to inquire about subject-related course offerings in the current summer semester.
  • We strongly advice to wait with any travel bookings.
  • Nonrefundable expenses caused by conference cancelation, quarantine orders etc. may be reimbursed by the TUM-GS as part of the internationalization support. However, costs reimbursed will be reduced from the internationalization budget.
  • Doctoral examinations may take place virtually in consultation with all parties involved. In case of face-to-face doctoral examinations, strict safety and prevention measures must be followed. Please contact your academic department/school for any related inquiries.  
  • Since 06th April 2020, dissertations and all required documents may be submitted via post to the TUM Center for Teaching and Study - Promotionen (formerly Promotionsamt). The office itself remains closed to public.  
  • Doctoral candidates who are currently in their last semester of enrollment (6th semester) may apply for an additional 7th semester of enrollment. This exemption only applies for individual cases who are/have been severely affected by the Coronavirus. Further information can be found below under "detailed information of the TUM-GS - enrollment".
  • The TUM-GS Management Office is open to public only after prior appointments. For any inquiries, please contact us per e-mail or telephone.

Detailed information of the TUM-GS

Administrative matters

  • Reachability
    The TUM Graduate School Management Office as well as all the Graduate Centers are available through e-mail. Documents submitted via post will be checked on a regular basis.    
  • Processing of applications
    Complete applications for registrations on the Doctoral Candidacy List will be processed. However, please note that the process is currently delayed due to limited university operations.
  • Officially certified documents
    Officially certified documents must still be submitted if required by the administrative process in question, e.g. recognition of foreign university degrees, application for the entry into the Doctoral Candidacy List.  
  • Recognition of qualification elements
    Please contact your Graduate Center via e-mail for information on the current procedure for the recognition of qualification elements.

Course program

In order to limit the spread of the Coronavirus as far as possible, the TUM President Professor Hofmann announced in his e-mail from 17th April 2020 that most courses will be offered online in the summer semester. In order to respond to the changing circumstances caused be the coronavirus, decisions about whether transferable skills courses will take place will be made 3 weeks prior to the course date. Registrations for new courses will now open 4 weeks prior to the course date. 

At the same time, online course offering will be extended on a regular basis. We kindly ask all doctoral candidates to visit the following TUM-GS website https://www.gs.tum.de/promovierende/qualifizierung/ueberfachliche-qualifizierung/kursprogramm/ for information about our online course offerings. We will also inform about open course spots in our newsletter. Doctoral candidates may sign up for the newsletter in their DocGS account under “personal data”.

Course fees for face-to-face courses already transferred will be reimbursed. Doctoral candidates who have registered for a course that has been canceled will be informed of the procedure in a separate email. For the reimbursement of course fees, please send an email to courses@gs.tum.de with your private address, your bank information (IBAN, BIC) and the name of the respective course.

Please note that the refund process is currently delayed due to limited university operations. We will process refund requests as soon as possible. Please kindly refrain from sending inquiries about anticipated refund time.   

Internationalization funding

Based on the recommendations of the Robert Koch Institute, the travel information of the Federal Foreign Office and the TUM regulations to limit the spread of the Coronavirus, all travels shall be limited as much as possible. All doctoral candidates are highly adviced to wait with travel bookings for the next couple of weeks.

Regulations for reimbursement

As a general rule, the TUM-GS may reimburse nonrefundable expenses for canceled internationalization activities in following cases:

  • Start date of the internationalization activity lies within the period of the current worldwide travel warning until the 14th June 2020, issued by the German Federal Foreign Office.  
  • For non-EU/Schengen countries: Start date of the internationalization activity lies within the period of the current travel warning until the 31.08.2020, issued by the German Federal Foreign Office.  
  • Cancelation/postponement of the conference, workshop, research stay etc. by the organizing/host institution.
  • Cancelation/postponement of the internationalization activity due to quarantine orders, care of family members (e.g. caused by closedown of schools and child-care facilities), travel restrictions etc.
  • Prohibition of business trips by the Academic Department/School.  

For reimbursement application, please submit following documents via post/Hauspost to the TUM-GS Management Office:

  • Completed TUM-GS Internationalization Application Form (to be generated via DocGS), signed by all parties.
  • Completed International Funding Table. (available at your Graduate Center)
  • Relevant receipts, confirmation of payment etc.
  • Notification of cancelation from the organizing institution (e.g. email), or explanation of the doctoral candidate why the internationalization activity is cancelled.
  • Confirmation from the doctoral candidate that he/she has applied for refund from the accommodation, airline etc. and that any refund received/to be received is mentioned in the application for refund from the TUM-GS.
  • Statement from the conference organizer etc. about the cancelation policies (e.g. email, screenshot website). 
  • Additional documents that may support the application.     

Please note that the refund process is currently delayed due to limited university operations. We will process refund requests as soon as possible. Please kindly refrain from sending inquiries about anticipated refund time or the receipt of your application documents.   

PLEASE NOTE:
Please note that the sum of the reimbursement will be reduced from your individual TUM-GS internationalization budget. Therefore, we recommend to contact your research group first about possible refund options. Should you have already received any reimbursement for the activity that is now canceled, the entire sum must be paid back to the TUM-GS. In case of cancelation fees, the cancelation fee will be deduced from the sum you have already received.

ATTENTION:

  • In case of unnecessary travel bookings, the TUM-GS may decline travel reimbursement applications.
  • Please note that the TUM-GS will not reimburse any cancelation fees for travel bookings made after 29.04.2020 for any internationalization activity before 14.06.2020 (worldwide) and 31.08.2020 (for non-EU/Schengen countries). 

The TUM-GS is working on solutions that may support individual cases of hardship. Please contact your Graduate Center concerning this matter. 

Please contact your Graduate Center of the TUM-GS Management Office via email to international@gs.tum.de.    

Thesis submission

Dissertations may be submitted electronically via DocGS as usual. Starting from 06th April, it is possible to submit dissertations and all required documents via post to the TUM Center for Study and Teaching – Promotionen (formerly Promotionsamt). The office itself is closed to public. Please note that it is also not possible to pick up certificates at the office.

Doctoral examinations

In an effort to support measures to contain the coronavirus, the oral defense of dissertations may be conducted using digital formats, e.g. via video conferencing, for as long as the current restrictions apply. In order to do so, all parties involved, including the examination chair, the doctoral candidate and all examiners must be able to fully participate in the virtual examination. Doctoral candidates are kindly asked to contact their academic department/school for further information on this matter.

Please note:

  • The academic departments/schools are responsible for the organization and conduct of virtual examinations. This means that the academic department/school may decide whether or not to conduct the virtual examination. 
  • All doctoral candidates shall be informed of the possibility to postpone doctoral examinations until the resumption of regular face-to-face examinations.
  • All partied involved, including the doctoral candidate, must confirm in writing of their consent to the virtual examination as well as to the system (please state the name) that will be used for the vitual examination. They shall state the current situation as reason for the virtual examination.

Technical solutions: 

The transmission of both video and sound are essential for the virtual examination. Based on recommendations of the TUM Center for Study and Teaching, virtual examinations should be conducted by using one of the systems introduced by the LRZ  (https://www.lrz.de/services/peripherie/video-web-konferenzen/webkonferenzen/) or the Deutsche Forschungsnetz (https://www.conf.dfn.de/). Furthermore, as a new development, it is also possible to use Zoom: https://wiki.tum.de/display/zoom/. However, ZOOM is still in test phase. Therefore, if ZOOM is used for virtual examinations, all parties involved have to explicitly confirm their consent in writing that ZOOM is used for the respective virtual examination.  

However, please note that due to excessive usage of video conferencing systems, there might be disturbances during the virtual examinations. In case of technical problems, the examination must be canceled. In this case, the examination must be repeated. We highly recommend to have a "plan b" if any technical problems arise. 

Face-to-face doctoral examinations:

The requirements for face-to-face doctoral examinations and related safety and preventions measures are currently under review. Doctoral candidates are kindly asked to contact their academic department/school for further information on this matter.

TUM-GS certificate and transcript of records

The processing of the TUM-GS certificates in DocGS (incorporation of corrections etc.) continues to take place. Preliminary transcript of records can be accessed and downloaded via the doctoral candidate’s progress tree in DocGS. If required, the PDF version of the TUM-GS certificate as well as the transcript can be made available. In this case, please contact your graduate center or docgs@zv.tum.de directly. Due to limited university operations, the process of issuing certificates and transcripts is currently delayed.

Embossed certificate

Due to limited university operations caused by the spread of the Coronavirus, we do not accept any requests for embossed certificates until further notice. The handling of current requests will be severely delayed. For questions please contact membership@gs.tum.de.

Enrollment

Doctoral candidates who are currently in their last semester of enrollment (6th semester) may apply for an additional 7th semester of enrollment if they are experiencing delays in their doctoral research caused by the coronavirus. This exemption only applies for individual cases who are/have been severely affected by the Coronavirus. To apply for this exception, please send an email to the TUM Center for Study and Teaching (studium@tum.de) explaining the delay caused by the coronavirus. Furthermore, please include a letter from your Graduate Center confirming the cause of significant delay and its implications for the progress of your doctoral research. Please note that this possibility is not granted automatically. The option to extend the enrollment period is only possible in few cases where the doctoral project is/was severely affected by the Coronavirus. Please contact your Graduate Center for further questions on this matter. 

Doctoral funding and Wissenschaftszeitvertragsgesetz (WissZeitVG, academic employment law)

The coronavirus and related restrictions have caused delays in the progress of doctoral research. With regard to the terminations of third-party grants, fellowships etc., doctoral candidates should consult with their doctoral supervisors and contact their funding provider. Some funding organizations (e.g. DFG, https://www.dfg.de/foerderung/info_wissenschaft/info_wissenschaft_20_22/index.html) have already implemented special measures and arrangements for their fellowship recipients.

To address the coronavirus and associated restrictions on working conditions, the German Federal Government is adjusting the maximum employment period for academic personnel regulated in the Wissenschaftszeitvertragsgesetz (academic employment law). Ongoing employment contracts for academic qualification purposes for the period between 1st March 2020 and 30th September 2020 may be extended for another 6 months. Further information can be found under the link https://www.bmbf.de/de/karliczek-wir-mildern-die-corona-beeintraechtigungen-fuer-studierende-und-wissenschaft-ab-11331.html.

Contact

Based on recommendations of the TUM Board of Management, the majority of the TUM-GS Management Office staff is working from home. We cannot be contacted via phone but are available through e-mail. Applications for refund and other documents submitted via post/Hauspost will be checked on a regular basis. However, please note that the refund process is currently delayed due to limited university operations.

WELCOME OFFICE

Application/Admission, Accomodation, Life in Munich, International applicants: welcomeoffice@gs.tum.de

INTERNATIONALIZATION

University Partnerships, Alliances, Funding: international@gs.tum.de

MEMBER ADMINISTRATION

Administration of member data, TUM-GS Certificates, Decorative Certificates: membership@gs.tum.de

DOCGS

Requests regarding DocGS: docgs@zv.tum.de

QUALIFICATION PROGRAM

Qualification Program, Course Program´: courses@gs.tum.de

KICK-OFF SEMINARS

Kick-off seminars: kickoff@gs.tum.de

 

General information about the Coronavirus and individual behavioral instructions

The Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the German public health authority monitoring the latest developments, publishes regular updates and recommendations, including general hygiene recommendations but also information on stays in risk areas. We strongly recommend to keep yourself informed and follow these recommendations: https://www.rki.de/DE/Content/InfAZ/N/Neuartiges_Coronavirus/nCoV.html.

Suspicion and contact cases are to be reported internally to your supervisor or doctoral supervisor. General information from TUM on the subject can be found here: https://www.tum.de/die-tum/aktuelles/coronavirus/.