Doctoral Programme Sociology


Faculty School of Social and Political Sciences
Duration / ECTS-Credits 6 semesters / 180 ECTS-Credits
Academic Degree
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Qualification Level
Doctorate (Third Cycle)
ISCED-11: Level 8, EQF/NQF: Level 8
ISCED-F 0314 Sociology and Cultural Studies
Mode of Study
Study Code
C 094 xxx | C 794 365 xxx
Information on the Curriculum (2009W)*
Admission Requirements
Relevant diploma or master's degree or equivalent

* Information on the Curriculum (2009W)

The complete version of the curriculum reflects the currently valid version of the curriculum. It is for informational purposes only and is not legally binding. The legally binding version of the curriculum, including any amendments, may be found in the University of Innsbruck Bulletins.

In order to determine which version of the curriculum is applicable in your case, see the Catalogue of Studies,
  available at:
  Section: Current Curriculum version.

University of Innsbruck Bulletins » (Click to open all University of Innsbruck Bulletins)

Information about examination regulations, assessment and grading

Examination regulations

The examination regulation is an integral part of the curriculum, detailed information can be found under the paragraph examination regulations.

Description of the applied grading system (including the grade distribution table) »

The grade distribution table is a statistical representation of the distribution of all successfully completed examinations in a given programme of study or subject (based on all registered students for the programme or subject). The grade distribution table is updated in regular intervals.

Austrian grading
 Outstanding performance

= 100%


 Generally good, but with some errors
 Generally sound work with a number of substantial errors
 Performance meets the minimum cirteria
 Substantial improvement necessary; requirement of further work

Source: WS 2017/2018

Overall classification of the qualification

Not applicable
Explanation: An overall classification (mit Auszeichnung bestanden/pass with distinction, bestanden/pass, nicht bestanden/fail) – is awarded only for examinations that conclude a programme of study and consist of more than one subject (an examination of this type is not specified in the curriculum of this programme of study).


Relevant master's or diploma degrees at the University of Innsbruck:

Criteria for the determination of equivalence:

Admission to the Doctor of Philosophy Programme Sociology requires a university (diploma or) master's degree in a thematically relevant field. Master's or diploma degrees awarded by universities of applied sciences ("Fachhochschulen") are considered on an individual basis.

In the event that equivalence has been established in principle but with certain qualifications missing for full equivalence, supplemental examinations may be required. These examinations must be completed during the doctoral degree programme.

Modules and Dissertation

Compulsory Modules
70 ECTS-Credits
110 ECTS-Credits

PhD Project
9 ECTS-Credits

Philosophy of Social Science
8 ECTS-Credits

Methods of Social Research and Statistics
10 ECTS-Credits

Sociology (Specialization)
8 ECTS-Credits

Generic Skills
15 ECTS-Credits

Participating in the Scientific Community ("Going Public")
15 ECTS-Credits

Doctoral Thesis Defence
5 ECTS-Credits

The dissertation is a piece of scientific work which – in contrast to a diploma or master‘s thesis – serves to prove the student's ability to cope with scientific questions in an independent way.

The dissertation topic has to be chosen from the field of sociology.

The student has to propose a team of supervisors, consisting of at least two people (dissertation committee), and to nominate one of them as the supervisor mainly responsible. It is permissible to propose supervisors (with the exception of the main supervisor) from subject-related fields. In justifiable exceptional cases it is possible for students to propose only one supervisor.

Prior to beginning the work, the student has to communicate the dissertation topic and the names of the supervisors in writing to the Director of Studies. Topic and supervisors are considered as accepted, if the Director of Studies does not veto them by means of a decree within one month after the receipt of the proposal.

Qualification Profile and Skills

The Doctor of Philosophy Programme Sociology is grouped among the social and economic sciences. The doctoral programme represents the highest point of academic studies, covering the structuring, supervision and support of a genuine subject-specific contribution to research.

As a reflexive discipline, sociology continually validates its issues and approaches in the light of the present day. As an empirical discipline, it constantly subjects its results to the test of experienced reality. Both aspects are reflected in the curriculum.

In addition, modules are offered that offer a preview of future occupational activities and that go beyond subject-specific aspects toward the development of generic competences and toward participation in the scientific community.

Graduates of the Doctor of Philosophy Programme Sociology are qualified to theoretically structure and address scientific issues in the discipline with appropriate methodology. In the modern knowledge society, graduates are equally equipped for academic careers as they are for planning and decision-making tasks at the intersections of science and practice that require familiarity with the problems and working methods of science.

Expected Learning Outcomes for the Doctorate

Graduates are qualified junior academics. They have mastered the theories and methods applied in sociological research and are capable of critically discussing, analysing, and further developing them. As they have contributed to the knowledge in the field, they possess the competence to develop and conduct substantial research projects with scientific integrity, and they are qualified to reflect on these processes scientifically and theoretically. Their acquired key competences include the ability to work independently and to communicate about their area of expertise within the scientific community and in society. They are therefore capable of making innovative contributions in scientific and professional contexts.

Future Prospects: Occupational Profiles and Career Opportunities

In the increasingly dense world of the 21st century, the condition of conflicting interpretations is becoming normal. Accordingly, the need for sociological explanations is growing, not only in the political public but also –and especially – in key positions of the knowledge society (public administration, media, business, associations, research institutions, education).

It has become increasingly clear today that socio-scientific core competences are required to cope with the performance demands of the rapidly changing professional world, thus providing graduates the opportunity to participate first-hand in professional changes.

Information about the Programme (in German only)

Forms (in German only)

Recognition (in German only)

Recognition of exams AND Supplementary Sheet

Contact and Information

Examination Office
Standort Universitätsstraße 15 Piktogramm barrierefreier Zugang

Dean of Studies
assoz. Prof. Mag. Dr. Franz Eder

Information for students with disabilities