How to Write a PhD Motivation Letter Application and enrolment

Writing a letter of motivation for your PhD studies can be quite a challenging process, but do not be discouraged. Knowing some main principles and tips can help you in this process.

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Any letter of motivation should include a brief introduction specifying the programme you would like to apply for.

Background information

It is important to provide the information about your previous experience. This experience can include your previous studies, teaching and research experience, work outside an academic sector. It is important to provide the details that are relevant to the PhD programme you are applying for since this will help you to better explain why you would like to study this programme.

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What has motivated you to do a PhD?

Based on the background information you provide, you will be able to identify 3 or 4 key factors that motivate you to do a PhD. Current research shows that PhD applicants may be motivated by many factors such as willingness to improve career prospects, passion for research work and teaching, the aspiration to discover and learn new things etc. You need to clearly describe what motivates you and what you would like to achieve as a result of your studies.


It is useful to add a few sentences on the impact your studies may have in your life, research area and society in general. This will help you to demonstrate the importance of your research in the context of a bigger picture.

Generally, a motivation letter should not be more than a page long. The key to success is a clear structure, passion for your research topic and ability to demonstrate the value and impact of your research.

Good luck!

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