COVID-19-related measures taken by GAUSS - Information for GAUSS doctoral students (without GGNB)

In addition to the regulations and measures of the Presidential Board (Präsidium) of the University, which you receive at your student email accounts, we would like to inform you of the following measures taken by GAUSS in the light of the ongoing COVID-19 crisis:

01.04.2020, 11:27

To all prospective PhD students:
In times of COVID-19 we had to modify the application procedure as signatures cannot be obtained from all relevant persons involved. This means that for all forms which require signatures, it is sufficient to provide the agreement of everyone in text form (during the current COVID-19-related state of emergency), e.g. by email, as long as the person sending the email is clearly identifiable.
More information can be found at the Application & Admission page, step 3: Apply for admission (program, supervision agreement).

20.03.2020, 16:10

For doctoral candidates whose doctoral examination (disputation) was supposed to take place in the current winter semester, but has to be postponed to the next semester due to the coronavirus crisis, it is not required to enrol (re-enrol) for the summer semester (starting in April). However, if doctoral candidates want to re-register, this is also possible (especially if this is required, for example, by residence law). Please note that the reimbursement of fees upon re-registration is then possible up to one month after the start of lectures (currently this would be 20 May 2020 at the earliest).

25.03.2020, 16:43

The City of Göttingen has announced an extension of the residence permits until 31.05.2020 by default (for expiration dates within the period from 23.03.2020 up to and including 30.05.2020). This was announced in the official journal of the City of Göttingen (Amtsblatt) on 24 March (only this text is legally binding!). For details please find the announcement here (PDF, only in German).

In short: Since foreigners are prevented through no fault of their own from submitting renewal applications in person due to restrictions on the operation of the foreigner's registration office, the following documents which expire within the period from 23.03.2020 to 30.05.2020 are extended ex officio until 31.05.2020:

• Temporary residence permits (national visas, residence permits, EU Blue Card, ICT cards, mobile ICT cards)

• Toleration and residence permits and border crossing certificates of foreigners with their main residence within the City of Göttingen.

An extension of the departure deadline must be submitted within four weeks as soon as the infection protection measures have been lifted in accordance with other announced general decrees of the City of Göttingen.

Please check updated lists of Methods and Skills courses in summer term 2020.
More online Methods and Skills courses will be announced on this page.

11.05.2020, 08:13

Please check this page for updates on online Methods courses.

18.05.2020, 12:22

There are some free slots in two additional online workshops on Good Scientific Practice which will take place in July:

“Good Scientific Practice for Biologists” (340493) by Prof. Bucher on Friday, 3 July 2020, 10-15h – 7 free slots

“Good Scientific Practice for Physicists and Chemists” (340494) by Prof. Grubmüller, Monday, 13 July, 9-12:30h – 22 free slots

If you are interested, you can sign up via Stud-IP from 18-31 May 2020.


04.05.2020, 14:37

Following Skills courses will be held online:

June (registration closed):

340159 (Seminar on Good Scientific Practice, Marina Rodnina), June 10th
340193 (Voice and Body Coaching, Julie Stearns), June 16-17th
340473 (Leadership Starter Kit, Nicole Eulenburg), June 25-26th
Courses "Introduction to Public Relations for Young Scientists" and "What to do with a PhD" are postponed until further notice, Industry excursions are cancelled.


July (registration open until May 20th):

340477 (Navigating difficult seas: professional communication, conflict management and negotiation, Neela Enke), July 2-3rd
340192 (Tailor-made job applications: How to apply for a job and be hired, Matthias Merkelbach), July 8-9th
340394 (Effective scientific writing, John Dixon), July 6-7th
340491 (Presenting your research through posters, slides and oral presentations, John Dixon), July 29-30th
340224 (Effective scientific Writing and Publishing, John Dixon), July 20-22nd
340104 (Career Strategies Accompanying the Doctorate, Simon Golin), July 28th
Course "Mental Strength for PhD Students" is postponed until further notice.

All registered participants will be provided with more information on how to use the Zoom software as well as an invitation link to join the online course in due time.

24.03.2020, 12:21

In times of COVID-19, the Centre for Statistics continues to offer statistical advice online via Skype (Dr. Jennifer Lorenz). The service comprises in particular consultation on data collection, statistical modelling and statistical inference.
Registration for a 1-to-1 statistical online consultation is still possible via the online questionnaire, please register for consulting in English or German.

20.03.2020, 10:42

All courses (skills, methods, industry excursions, career workshops and career impulse sessions)
organized by the GAUSS and GGNB Offices are cancelled until further notice.
Exception: The online project management course “Fast Forward”, offered by Dr. Nadine Sinclair will be held as originally scheduled.

22.04.2020, 16:53, new update of post from 20.03.2020; updated 08.05.2020, 14:50

According to the measures of the Presidential Board as of 08.04.2020 and the revised version of the regulations and measures as of 07.05.2020 (Version 2.0; as of now only in German) it is recommended that teaching, studying and examinations should take place digitally and should not be attended in person. This also applies to TAC meetings.

We recommend to arrange TAC meetings in near future by video‐conferencing and avoid face-to-face meetings.

The recommendations by the data protection officer of the University apply. The videoconferencing page of the GWDG informs about various videoconferencing services with recommendations and guidelines on how to use them.

25.03.2020, 15:59, updated post from 20.03.2020, 10:42

Changes in Thesis Advisory Committee (TAC) Meetings from 20.03.2020:
To facilitate the procedure of video-based TAC meetings, the TAC members should confirm to the doctoral candidate per email that a video-based meeting took place. This will replace original signatures on the performance record/checklist (confirmations should be saved for later use). Alternatively, the signatures of the TAC members for the video-based TAC meeting can be collected within one month after the current COVID-19-related state of emergency has ended.

20.03.2020, 10:42

• It is recommended that all TAC meetings scheduled for the coming weeks (at least until 20 April 2020) are postponed unless there is an important reason for keeping the envisaged date. Please contact the members of your TAC to discuss the need for postponing your next meeting.
• In case of an important reason, it is possible to hold your TAC meeting by video‐conferencing. The recommendations by the data protection officer of the University apply. Face‐to‐face meetings are not permitted. The videoconferencing page of the GWDG informs about various videoconferencing services with recommendations and guidelines how to use them.
• The GAUSS Office will be able to assist with technical issues regarding your video-based TAC meeting.
Updated on 25.03.2020: The TAC members should confirm to the doctoral candidate per email that a video-based meeting took place. This will replace original signatures on the performance record/checklist (confirmations should be saved for later use). Alternatively, the signatures of the TAC members for the video-based TAC meeting can be collected within one month after the current COVID-19-related state of emergency has ended.
• Likewise, applications for thesis extension should be discussed in the virtual TAC meeting and be confirmed to the program office / deaneries by email.

20.03.2020, 10:42

To account for delays caused by the COVID‐19 crisis, the deadline for submission of the doctoral thesis will be extended for ALL GAUSS doctoral candidates by three months. We will closely observe the future development of the situation and will consider additional flexibility if needed.

20.03.2020, 10:42

• The submission of your doctoral thesis (dissertation) will have to be made electronically until further notice. For electronic submission, inform at first your deanery and the GAUSS Office, which will then send information to the PhD student how to upload the thesis in a GWDG ownCloud folder.
• On the day of submission, please upload two PDF files: (i) The complete dissertation identical with the print version, and (ii) one PDF that includes all completed and signed forms as a scan (see handout “Countdown to your doctoral degree”). If you don’t have access to a scanner, you can take photos of the forms (which must be clear enough to read) and upload them as a combined word or PDF file.
• The electronic submission of your dissertation with all relevant documents ensures that you have kept the official submission deadline. Based on the electronic submission, the further process towards the completion of your doctorate will be initiated. This includes the electronic transmission of your thesis to the reviewers for further assessment and your admission to the doctoral examination. For the electronic transmission and assessment, the GWDG ownCloud service will be used.
• Please note that you still need to print one hardcopy which we will need for our archive later. This hardcopy needs to be submitted to the GAUSS Office within one month after the current COVID-19-related state of emergency has ended.
• Please discuss with your examination board whether a member may request a printed version for his/her personal use.

21.03.2020, 13:56, updated post from 20.03.2020, 10:42

The measure from 20.03.2020 remains valid ( Thesis publication: The submission deadline will be extended up to one month after the end of the current COVID 19-related state of emergency.), although you can also submit your thesis electronically as a PDF to the SUB (see instructions on eDiss).
The SUB checks the incoming PDF files (including all metadata) on their eDiss portal on a daily basis. As soon as your thesis has been uploaded, they will forward the corresponding message to the GAUSS Office to inform us that you have fulfilled your obligation to publish. As far as the printed copies of your thesis are concerned, the SUB relies on the personal responsibility of the doctoral candidate. You are requested to send the printed copies to the SUB via mail (post). After the SUB staff is able to work on site again, they will consolidate all documents and send the written letter of confirmation of publication directly to the GAUSS Office. You will be notified via e-mail upon the release of your dissertation.

20.03.2020, 10:42

• Thesis publications are not possible until further notice due to the shutdown of the SUB.
• Should your publication deadline expire within the next weeks, please contact the GAUSS Office by email to ask for an extension of the deadline.
The submission deadline will be extended up to one month after the end of the current COVID 19-related state of emergency.

08.05.2020, 14:19

In line with the regulations and measures of the Presidential Board (Präsidium) for protection against infection as of 08.04.2020, the revised version of the regulations and measures as of 07.05.2020 (Version 2.0; as of now only in German), and the Guidelines for examinations (14.05.2020, updated document (in German)), the faculties of mathematics and natural sciences and the GGNB have compiled additional regulations on oral doctoral examinations in presence:


Faculty of Biology and Psychology
Faculty of Chemistry
• Faculty of Geoscience and Geography: Disputations in presence, Disputations online
• Faculty of Mathematics* and Computer Science
Faculty of Physics
GGNB

*Doctoral examinations in presence are still not allowed in the field of mathematics. Video-based examinations can be held according to the GAUSS guidelines.

20.03.2020, 10:42

• It is strongly recommended that all disputations scheduled for the coming weeks (at least until 20 April 2020) are postponed unless there is an important reason for keeping the envisaged date. According to the current assessment, we recommend to postpone the date of the disputations scheduled for March or April by at least two months though it is not possible to make any reliable prediction how the COVID-19 crisis will further develop.
• It is the responsibility of the doctoral candidates to organize an appropriate date of their thesis defense and keep the deaneries and GAUSS Office informed about any change of date.
• In case of an important reason, it is possible to take the doctoral examination (colloquium with presentation and oral defense) using an appropriate video system. The videoconferencing page of the GWDG informs about various videoconferencing services with recommendations and guidelines how to use them. The recommendations by the data protection officer of the University apply.
Note of caution: Experience tells that such video-based meetings are often subject to technical challenges such as interrupted connections or poor sound/video quality so that they have to be terminated.
• A video-based disputation requires the consent by the PhD candidate and all members of the examination board, as well as the approval by the speaker of the respective doctoral program by email or in writing (by post). This consent should be sent to the GAUSS Office (in cc to the respective deanery).
• The GAUSS Office will be able to assist with technical issues regarding the video-based disputation.
• The video-based disputation in an electronic meeting room is limited to a maximum of 20 participants (including the PhD candidate and the six members of the examination board). All guests who want to participate within these capacity limits need to register (name and Email address) at least three days prior to the disputation with the GAUSS Office. GGNB doctoral candidates can find additional information here. The participation of guests is at the discretion of the chairperson of the examination board.
• In case of technical difficulties that affect the presentation and participation of the examinee or of members of the examination board, the chairperson of the examination board may decide to terminate the disputation at any time. In this case, an alternative date will be required for repeating the examination. In order to ensure stability of video/audio transmission, it may be required to reduce the number of online participants and limit it to the PhD candidate and the members of the examination board. Should an unstable video/audio connection require the participants to reconnect, and reconnections prove to be non-satisfactory, the disputation shall be terminated after a decision based on common sense.
• At the end of the thesis defense the examination board will convene in a closed online session. Once an agreement has been reached, the examinee will be invited to rejoin the online meeting and will be informed about the results.

20.03.2020, 10:42

• The GAUSS Office and the deaneries of the mathematics and natural science faculties are closed until further notice. In urgent cases you can reach us via email.
• Please do not send any documents by post – only send electronic versions (scans). We do not know when we will be back in the office – we can only process documents if we receive them electronically.
• All correspondence (admission to examination, invitations, etc.) will only be sent by e-mail.

29.04.2020, 09:23

We regret to inform you that the doctoral graduation ceremony at the Aula on July 24th has to be cancelled. According to the Federal government and the measures taken by the Presidential board of the University, the ceremony falls into the category of large events and therefore cannot take place until further notice. Unfortunately, at this point we are not able to say when the next ceremony will take place and how the participants registered for April and July can be accommodated on the next graduation event(s). We are working on possible solutions and you will be informed as soon as the situation allows to continue this wonderful tradition. Please stay informed via the GAUSS homepage and our COVID-19-related measures for updates.

20.03.2020, 10:42

• We regret to say that the doctoral graduation ceremony on April 24th, 2020 is cancelled.
• The next ceremony will take place on July 24th, 2020.
• If you have been registered for the ceremony in April, you will be re-registered for July. Please understand that, since we will have to accommodate a double amount of participants, we cannot allow guests at the ceremony in July.

31.03.2020, 13:03


Addition to Doctoral Degree Regulations (RerNat-O) valid since April 2018: §7a Measures in the event of significant disruptions to teaching and examination operations, valid retroactively since 16.03.2020
In consultation with the GAUSS Board and the deaneries of the mathematics and natural science faculties, the Presidential Board (Präsidium) has decided to change the doctoral degree regulations in view of the current coronavirus COVID-19 epidemic. The modification is mainly intended as a legal framework to permit flexible solutions regarding deadlines for thesis submission or TAC meetings and to maintain (video-based) teaching and examinations. The measures have been implemented to avoid considerable disadvantages especially for doctoral students.
The change involves adding a new paragraph §7a to the doctoral degree regulations, which was just announced in the Official Announcements I of the Georg-August-Universität Göttingen and will take effect retroactively as of 16.03.2020. §7a simply covers the legal side of the measures taken by GAUSS, that were already sent to you last week by email and can be found on this page.

We very much hope that the situation will improve soon and that we will then be available for you again as usual.

Thank you for your understanding, and keep well!

Your GAUSS Office

Information for GGNB students is available via the GGNB homepage