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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Institut für Sozialwissenschaften


The Research Training Program in Social Sciences consists of four modules:

  • Module A: Research Design and Professional Development
  • Module B: Theories and Methods
  • Module C: Current debates in Social Sciences
  • Module D: Thesis Module

In Module A students attend the Research Design Course as well as the Professional Development Seminar, courses which are exclusively designed for MA RTP students. Therefore, an intensive and personalized study environment in a small group (max. 15 students) is guaranteed. These mandatory courses will be taught in English.

In Module B students choose one specific course from the regular ISW course table connected to either theoretical or methodical concepts which will help them to concretize their research questions.

In Module C students select additional courses based on their individual learning agreement. These courses should be chosen according to the respective needs of each student. In addition, students may take language classes or intercultural training courses.

In Module D students participate in the research colloquium of their supervisor and write their MA thesis. The thesis should be approximately 18.000 words long.

You can see the official study and examination regulations (Prüfungsordnung) for the MA RTP here:

The Prüfungsordnung is only available in German.

Ideal program structure:

Here you will find the distribution of modules with their respective courses, contact hours, and credit points during a typical semester. These represent an ideal, but not mandatory, program structure.


  • Module


    Module Name

    1. Semester

    2. Semester

    Module A

    Research Design and Professional Development

    Two mandatory seminars:

    • Research Design Course

    2 SWS, 4 CP

    •  SE Professional Development

    2 SWS, 4 CP

    with MAP (final exam - Expose)

    2 CP

    (10 CP in total)


    Module B

    Theories and Methods

    One elective:

    • LK according to individual study plan

    2 SWS, 6 CP

    with MAP (final exam - seminar paper)

    4 CP

    (10 CP in total)


    Module C

    Current Debates in Social Science

    Two electives:

    • SE according to individual study plan

    2 SWS,  5 CP

    • SE according to individual study plan

    2 SWS, 5 CP

    (10 CP in total)


    Überfachlicher Wahlpflichtbereich (interdisciplinary mandatory elective subjects)


    One elective:

    • SE according to individual study plan

    var. SWS, 5 CP

    (Modules with 5 CP from the interdisciplinary offerings from other departments, as well as other masters programs, institutions, language courses, or integration courses for international students)

    Module D

    Final Module


    Master thesis:

    22 CP

    Master thesis colloquium

    2 SWS

    (25 CP in total)

    SWS and CP per semester

    30 CP

    30 CP



    SWS – Contact hour, per week, per semester (Semesterwochenstunde)

    CP - Credits points (Leistungspunkte)

        MAP - final exam (Modulabschlussprüfung)

        LK - intensive reading course (Lektürekurs)

        SE - seminar (Seminar)