Survey

General
  • id
  • username
  • 2009-06-15
  • Austria
  • University of Graz
  • Department of Translation Studies
  • Susanne Göpferich
  • Full professor
  • Yves Gambier
  • Some to the institute only, some to Austria as a whole
Structure
  • The University of Graz has no special PhD program in Translation Studies but only a PhD program for the Humanities (“Doktoratsstudium der Philosophie an der Geisteswissenschaftlichen Fakultät der Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz; new version, which will be described below, will take effect on October 1, 2009). In this PhD program, the students have to select a major and a minor. Those who work in the field of Translation Studies have to select Translation Studies as their major. The minor can be any subject in the Humanities Faculty, such as English Philology, related to their PhD dissertation (exceptions possible).
  • 3 years in theory. In the Humanities PhD program, the students have to attend seminars, lectures and other courses in their major and minor worth 30 ECTS.
  • Yes, they are possible but do not exist yet.
Admission
  • At least 8 semesters (= 4 years). MA or equivalent.
  • Yes, but students who come from a different discipline may have to take additional courses from the MA program in Translation Studies.
  • Students have to find a supervisor at the Department of Translation Studies who accepts the proposal. Students are free to choose their research topics, but must find a supervisor who feels competent in supervising this research and is willing to do so.
  • See answer to previous question.
  • Student fee of about 350 € per semester. Scholarships of 600 € per semester available for 2 years for a very limited number of excellent students who are expected to complete their PhD thesis within these 2 years. No salary for working on the PhD thesis.
Programme
  • In the Humanities PhD program, the students have to attend seminars, lectures, colloquia and other courses in their major and minor worth 30 ECTS.
  • Yes, all courses are theoretical at this level. It is recommended that students start with at least some of the courses, but they can do dissertation work alongside.
  • There is no national research school focusing on TS. Seminars and lectures the students have attended at other institutions can be acknowledged for their program at Graz. Students are expected to attend conferences, but this is not obligatory.
  • Length: at least 250 pages. Language: German or any other language the supervisor accepts. No time limit. Prior scientific work can be extended into a PhD thesis. PhD thesis must be a monograph.
  • There are scholarships to be applied for. Bilateral Erasmus agreements for teacher exchange at PhD level exist between Graz, Copenhagen, Joensuu and Stockholm.
Supervision
  • Supervisors must be “habilitiert”. As a rule, they will be someone from the department where the PhD student is studying, but they may also come from a different university or country. The supervisor’s role is that of an advisor. He or she has to write an assessment of the PhD thesis (2 assessments are required) and examines the student after the successful completion of the PhD thesis (defensio dissertationis, oral exams in the major and minor).
  • Usually 1 or 2 people. Joint supervision is possible and common.
  • Depends on the supervisor. “Supervision agreement” to be signed by the supervisor and PhD student.
Assessment
  • PhD dissertation is assessed by at least 2 persons. 1 person is the supervisor, the other person may come from a different department or university (even from abroad). If 1 of the assessments is negative, a third person will have to write an assessment. After successful completion of the dissertation and after all the courses required in the PhD program have been completed successfully, there will be an oral examination (“Rigorosum”). This is composed of a defensio dissertationis, and oral examinations in the major and the minor.
  • In Austria, the dissertation need not be published although this is recommended. The student has to submit one copy to the university library and one copy to the National Library. Articles before the final defence are desirable, but are not a must.
Other
  • Strength: PhD program leaves much room for personal interests and preferences of the PhD students. Weaknesses: No specific PhD program in TS in Austria and only a limited number of seminars and lectures designed specifically for TS PhD students. It would be desirable for the PhD students to have a larger variety of seminars and lectures on the specific subfield of TS they are interested in. I am especially interested in something like a Joint PhD in Translation Studies focusing on translation process research/corpus-based studies/empirical methods. Several institutions could contribute to such a cooperation, so that the PhD students from each cooperating university could choose their seminars and lectures from the repertoire of courses offered by all these institutions and get them acknowledged by their home universities. Another disadvantage: the financing problem. To be able to employ promising PhD students, professors usually have to get funding for research projects within which they can then employ them. Most PhD students have to work outside academia to earn their living. This means that they will have to work on their PhD theses for a long time.
  • PhD program is being revised at the moment. The version described here, which will take effect on October 1, 2009, will be downloadable from the website of the Univerity of Graz (http://www.uni-graz.at).