Behavior and Cognition, Ph.D.

  • Application Deadline
  • 36 months
  • Tuition
  • English (take IELTS)


Research projects are undertaken in the fields of psychology, anthropology and evolutionary biology, with an emphasis on comparative approaches. Core areas are the evolution of social behavior, group behavior and group coordination, developmental psychology, as well as the cognitive and physiological foundations of behavior. The program is run by the Faculty of Biology and Psychology of the Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, the "Courant Research Centre Text Structures" and the German Primate Center. Interdisciplinary collaboration and exchange are an important element of this study program.

Detailed Programme Facts

  • Programme intensity

    You can choose to do this programme part-time or full-time.

    • Duration 36 months
  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus

Programme Structure

Behavior and Cognition provides comprehensive training for the international scientific and non-scientific job market. The main characteristics of the teaching concept are:
  • Supervision by interdisciplinary thesis committees
  • Thesis is based on own scientific work
  • Integration in supervisors research group
  • Presence in the international scientific community
  • Course work in five modules (20 ECTS points):
  1. Learning and reflection
  2. Method courses
  3. Teaching
  4. Science communication
  5. Key qualifications
  • Strong emphasis on soft skills
  • International networking activities
  • Cumulative thesis

English Language Requirements

You only need to take one of these language tests:

  • Minimum required score:


    The IELTS – or the International English Language Test System – tests your English-language abilities (writing, listening, speaking, and reading) on a scale of 1.00–9.00. The minimum IELTS score requirement refers to which Overall Band Score you received, which is your combined average score. Read more about IELTS.

    Take IELTS test
  • Minimum required score:


    The TOEFL – or Test OF English as a Foreign Language – offers a paper-based test (PBT). The final, overall PBT score ranges between 310 and 677, and is based on an average taken from the three test components (listening, structure, and reading). The writing part of this test is scored separately on a scale of 0-6. Read more about TOEFL (PBT).

  • Minimum required score:


    The TOEFL – or Test Of English as a Foreign Language – offers an internet-based test (iBT). The final, overall iBT score ranges between 0 and 120, and includes a scaled average from the four components (reading, listening, speaking, and writing). Read more about TOEFL (iBT).

Academic Requirements

Applicants must hold a master degree in mathematics, psychology or the natural sciences. A proof of proficiency in English, a written statement by a member of BeCog confirming supervision and a short project proposal must be submitted upon application.

Tuition Fee


Usually, the research group or department provides funding to their doctoral students in the form of either an employment contract or a scholarship (approx. monthly amount of scholarship or net salary: 1100-1400 EUR).

StudyPortals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.