Structured PhD (Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences) (German)

College of Arts, Social Sciences, & Celtic Studies,
School of Languages, Literature and Culture

Course overview

Download Structured PhD guidelines (PDF file) here.

The Discipline offers intense supervision in a wide area of German interests. Each student will be assigned a primary Supervisor(s) and a Graduate Research Committee made up of experienced researchers to plan their programme of study and to provide on-going support to their research. The student will be immersed in a vibrant research environment, with regular research seminars, workshops, conferences, guest speakers from Ireland and abroad, and readings by German, Austrian and Swiss authors.  
Students also have the opportunity to develop their practical skills, for example, by participating in the regularly staged German plays, classes on rhetoric and presentation skills and in particular by teaching undergraduate courses.
As part of the doctoral training available on the Structured PhD programme, students avail themselves of a range of interdisciplinary taught modules.  The wide menu of available options include modules that:

  • are Discipline-Specific in that they augment the student’s existing knowledge in their specialist area,  e.g.,
    Interpreting Literature: Theories and Methods GR 521
    Language and Intercultural Communication (German) GR 554
    Modern German Literature II: Functions and Forms GR 522
    Modern German Literature I
    Self-referentiality in Postmodern Media  MC503
    The Art of Reading MC 504
    Contemporary Literary Genres MC501
    From Division to Unification: Literary Texts and their Political Contexts. 

  • are Dissertation-Specific in that they supply core skills which are essential to completion of the research project e.g. additional language skills

  • acknowledge a student’s professional development e.g. presentation of a paper at an International Conference

  • enhance a student’s employability through generic training e.g. Careers Workshops, Computer literacy.

Programmes available

Structured PhD (German)—full-time
Structured PhD (German)—part-time

Entry requirements

Candidates should have an honours degree in German; Second Class Honours, Grade 1 minimum (or equivalent international qualification).

Areas of interest

Dr. Christa Brennan
Comparative study of mythological tales, folk tales, legends, conceptions and perceptions of time in literature, development of course material for an Applied Language Course for Science
Students. New methods in language teaching, new strategies in second language acquisition, language teaching and learning through music, problem-based learning.


Dr. Deirdre Byrnes
The writing of Monika Maron, GDR literature, Wende Literatur, Literature of the New Berlin Republic, Architecture in the New Berlin Republic, Memory discourses, Law and Literature.


Ms. Doris Devilly
The writing of J.K. Rowling, children's fiction and fantasy, fan fiction and fan communities.


Dr. Tina-Karen Pusse
Concepts of alterity and self (de)construcion /autobiography, German Literature from 1880 to the present (especially Rilke, Nietzsche, Celan, Kafka, Jahnn), concepts of laughter, memoria
and affect regulation in German poetologies, Adoption/Doing Family.


Ms. Áine Ryan
The New Multi-Ethnic Ireland, Intercultural Communication, Translation Studies, The Writings of Ingeborg Bachmann, Language Learning Methodologies.


Prof. H. W. Schmidt-Hannisa
German literature and culture from the 18th to the 21st century; old and new media (especially book, letter, library, internet); history of reading; literature and dream; money and economy in
German literature and thought; intercultural studies.


Mr. Michael Shields
Medieval, renaissance, and modern German literature; text and music in medieval song; linguistics; translation studies.

Find out more

Professor H.-W. Schmidt-Hannisa
T +353 91 492 239

PAC code

GYG48, part-time

Current project

Dreams as a form of autobiography. Rudolf Leonhard's 1941–44 Dream Collection

The Representation of Suicide in early 20th Century Literature

Eco-criticism: Rainer Marie Rilke and Werner Herzog

Fees for this course

EU: €4,275 p.a. 2016/17

Non-EU: €13,250 p.a. 2016/17

What Our Students Say


Simone Klapper |   The Representation of Suicide in early 20th Century Literatu

As my dissertation is interdisciplinary I appreciate the opportunities to encounter new ideas in the various modules the Structured PhD Programme provides. Especially the chance to talk to students from other research areas is helpful to reflect upon my own approach.