FAQ - Ernst Mach Grant ASEA-UNINET
These FAQs refer to the call for the Austrian academic year 2023/2024 only!
1) General remarks
Please keep in mind that your application will be read by several persons (e.g., our evaluators, experts). Therefore, we recommend you to ensure that the information you provide is comprehensive, coherent, and understandable. Also, check if your entries are complete and free of spelling errors. Once you have finished your application, please review your entries carefully.
2) Who is eligible for this grant?
- Undergraduates and Graduates (students seeking, or who have finished, a bachelor’s/master’s degree) in the field of music practice, including instrumental and vocal performance, composition, and conducting fields, may apply for the Music Grant.
- Postgraduates who wish to carry out a full doctorate/PhD-programme in Austria and fulfill the requirements for admission at a prospective Austrian host institution may apply for a Full PhD Grant.
- Postdocs who are involved in teaching and research at an ASEA-UNINET member university in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, or Vietnam may apply for a Postdoc Grant.
Eligibility for application: Only candidates who hold the citizenship of Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, or Vietnam are eligible to apply for this grant.
Please read the grant regulations carefully before applying and contact the responsible OeAD Programme Officer/s well in advance if you have any questions.
Maximum age: Undergraduates, Graduates and Postgraduates: 35 years; Postdocs: 45 years
3) Can I apply if I currently study (or have studied) at an Austrian university?
No. The Ernst Mach incoming grants are aimed at visiting scholars for a short research stay only. If you are a regular student at an Austrian university, you are not eligible.
Applicants who permanently reside in Austria or who have studied in Austria for the majority of their academic career are not eligible for application.
Postgraduates seeking to pursue a complete PhD study in Austria are eligible to apply, provided they have obtained their highest academic degree at a higher education institution outside of Austria. For further information, please see the Special Guideline for the Granting of Federal Funds of the Austrian Ministry of Science, Education and Research (BMBWF), available in German only.
For more information on other Austrian grant opportunities, please visit our online database www.grants.at
4) Can I apply if I am already a visiting scholar at an Austrian university?
You cannot apply for your present stay in Austria. However, it is possible to apply for a future stay in the next academic year. Please note that applicants must not have studied/pursued research/pursued academic work in Austria within six months prior to taking up an Ernst Mach grant. This means, you must have resided outside of Austria for at least six months before returning to Austria again.
Applicants who are permanently residing in Austria or who have studied in Austria for the majority of their academic career are not eligible for application.
5) Can I use this grant to enrol in a PhD or Postdoc programme in Austria?
The Ernst Mach incoming grants are aimed at postgraduates for max. 36 months as well as visiting scholars for a short research of max. 9 months and students pursuing music practice for 9 months. For more information on other Austrian grant opportunities, please visit the online database www.grants.at
6) Are all Austrian universities eligible as host institutions for a grant application?
Only Austrian ASEA-UNINET partner institutions are eligible to host Ernst Mach Grant ASEA-UNINET grant awardees for a research stay.
7) Do I need to enrol at an Austrian university in order to apply for the grant?
You need to enrol as a regular student at a university if you wish to pursue a complete PhD study programme in Austria. Please contact your prospective host university in Austria for information on their admission procedure as well as on documents to be submitted and deadlines to be met. In most cases, you can find all the relevant information on the website of the university in question. You may apply for the Ernst Mach Grant ASEA-UNINET prior to enrolling at a host university in Austria; however, please note that your enrollment must be completed before you may receive the scholarship.
For a Postdoc Grant (up to 9 months), you do not have to enrol at an Austrian university. However, you do need a written confirmation of supervision from an Austrian full or associate university professor to support your research project in Austria.
For a Music Practice Grant (9 months), you do not have to enrol at an Austrian university. However, you do need a Letter of Endorsement, which is issued after passing the auditions process.
Candidates in the field of Music Practice do not need a confirmation of supervision from an Austrian full or associate university professor at the time of application. The final confirmation of supervision by a university professor is only given after the compulsory participation in the audition process (see FAQ 25).
8) Can the OeAD help me to find an academic supervisor in Austria?
No, unfortunately we are not in a position to help you in this regard. You need a confirmation of academic supervision from an Austrian professor for your application. Such a written consent may only be issued for the eligible programmes open for application by a full or associate professor at an Austrian ASEA-UNINET partner university.
To look for a professor who might support your research stay, please browse the website of any Austrian ASEA-UNINET member university in order to find an institute or a department that suits your academic profile. It is best to ask professors directly, they are used to such requests. We recommend clearly stating that you are applying for the Ernst Mach Grant ASEA-UNINET, and also outlining your intended research stay. The list of all Austrian member universities can be found at: https://asea-uninet.org/network-members/member-universities/austrian-universities/ .
Music Practice Grant applicants will be allocated a supervisor after successful completion of the audition process. Please refer to FAQ 25) for further information.
9) Can my Austrian academic supervisor also issue a Letter of Recommendation?
No, please bear in mind that your Austrian supervisor issues the written confirmation of supervision (Letter of Invitation) and, as such, cannot write for you a Letter of Recommendation in addition to this. In such a case, the Letter of Recommendation will be considered as invalid.
10) Do I have to use any specific templates for the Letters of Recommendation or the consent of supervision (Letter of Invitation)?
No. The letters can be freely written, but please keep in mind that they must contain all relevant information (e.g., the planned duration of your research stay, the proposed title of your project, which support the supervisor can provide you with). In addition, they must bear the letterhead, date and signature of the person recommending or supervising the applicant as well as the stamp of the university or department. Please double-check that your letters contain all these elements and, if any of these elements is missing, kindly ask for these to be provided. The letters must not be older than six months at the time of the application.
11) Can my professors send the Letters of Recommendation directly to the OeAD?
Normally, you will have to upload your Letters of Recommendation to your online application account. If professors at your university do not usually hand out signed Letters of Recommendation, please ask your professors to send the letters directly to the responsible Programme Officer/s. In this case, please note that we would need to upload the letter(s) to your online application file before you can submit your application. Please be aware that we cannot guarantee confidentiality to your professors as you will have access to your online application, including the Letters of Recommendation, at all times. Please ensure that the letters will arrive before the deadline. Documents that arrive after the deadline cannot be accepted, and applications with missing documents will not be given further consideration.
12) Do I have to translate my documents or submit officially certified translations?
No. If the documents are in English, a translation into German is not necessary. If an original document is neither in English nor in German, please upload a copy of the original together with a rough English or German translation. An officially certified translation is not required for your grant application.
However, please note that official translations may be required at a later stage by your prospective host university in Austria during the enrollment process.
13) Do I have to submit official testing certificates to prove my language proficiency?
There is no need to submit any official language testing certificate such as a TOEFL, etc., but you should have sufficient knowledge of English or German in the respective subject area. Your Austrian academic supervisor also has to confirm that your project can be done in English or German. Please note that officially certified certificates may be required by your prospective host university in Austria during the enrollment process.
If you do upload language certificates, please ensure they are up-to-date (i.e., within the last two years). Alternatively, you may provide an estimation of your language proficiency per self-assessment.
14) Where can I upload my Research Proposal?
The Research Proposal has to be uploaded in the online application tool linked in the official grant announcement. The relevant category is named "Research Proposal".
Further information on the Research Proposal can be found in the official grant announcement.
Music Practice Grant applicants do not need to submit a Research Proposal (see FAQ 25).
15) What should I consider when planning my study/research stay
Within the regulations of the programme, you are free to plan your research stay the way you see fit. However, in our experience with former scholarship holders, we recommend the following:
- Please inform yourself about the legal regulations for entry into Austria and plan the start of your research stay such that there is enough time for waiting periods set by the entry requirements. Please be aware that these regulations might differ depending on the length of your stay, especially if you are a national of a non-EU country or if you are planning a research stay of more than 6 months (https://oead.at/en/to-austria/scholars/before-arrival/entry-conditions). The length of your stay also affects your options for health insurance (https://oead.at/en/to-austria/scholars/before-arrival/insurance).
- Please be aware that you may only apply for study/research time periods consisting of full months. Furthermore, please ensure you apply for a study/research time period that starts on the first of a month and ends on the last day of a month. If you plan to arrive in the middle of a month, administrative problems might otherwise occur. Additionally, you may still need to pay full months of rent, insurance, etc.
16) When should I start my PhD / Postdoc / Music Practice programme?
It is standard practice at Austrian universities to start a Full PhD in the Winter Semester (October 1st).
Postdocs may begin their project in accordance with their supervisor (October 1st at the earliest).
Music Practice scholars typically start their programme on October 1st. An alternative starting time needs to be discussed with, and confirmed by, the music universities.
17) Is it possible to hand in documents after the deadline?
No, documents submitted after the deadline will not be accepted.
18) When should I submit my application?
The application deadline is on the closing date mentioned in the online call at 23:59 (CET - Central European Time). After the deadline, all applications will be examined by experts. Please do not wait until the last moment of the deadline to submit your application. Once you press the “submit application” button, the system will automatically check if specific entries in your application are complete. This process may take a while and error messages may occur. Please also note that technical support cannot be provided outside of office hours. For these reasons, please review and submit your application well before the deadline. All applications will be reviewed after the deadline once the call closes.
19) Why are own funds required for this scholarship?
The scholarship rate might not cover all expenses for your study/research stay in Austria. In addition to your stay in Austria, you might have various expenses before you are able to enter Austria. Hence, own funds are required. Please make sure to inform yourself about living costs in Austria beforehand. Increased expenses may occur due to
- compulsory health insurance;
- proof of own funds to the Austrian residence authority to receive your residence permit (e.g., if your accommodation costs are more than EUR 300/month);
- travel costs to the Austrian representative authority for receiving your Residence Permit/Visa;
- journey to Austria;
- down payment for your accommodation.
20) Do I have to provide evidence of my own funds?
You do not need to provide evidence of own funds to the OeAD. However, the Austrian authorities may require proof of your funds in the case of increased living costs (e.g., for health insurance or when your accommodation costs are more than EUR 300/month). In the application form, guidance is provided in estimating these costs.
Your online application must include a financial plan that covers your estimated living costs in Austria. We attempt to assist you in estimating these costs. Your estimated livings costs do not influence the prospects of a successful grant application. However, the scholarship rate will be reduced in accordance with your estimate if the scholarship rate is higher than your actual living costs.
21) Is it possible to raise the scholarship rate if I can account for increased expenses (e.g., if I bring my family along)?
No. Unfortunately, it is not possible to increase the scholarship rate.
22) Who decides if I will be awarded a scholarship?
The formal criteria of your application will be evaluated by us. The selection procedure is based on a multi-stage process:
- Examination of the formal requirements
- Examination of the applications' general plausibility
- Examination and evaluation of the applications by ASEA-UNINET experts
- Assessment based on personal interviews conducted by ASEA-UNINET experts. Criteria include language skills, quality of the Research Proposal, and relevance of the project
- Final decision by the BMBWF
Based on the results of this evaluation, the board of examiners of ASEA-UNINET will award the best applicants with a scholarship.
For applicants in the field of music practice, the application steps are as follows:
- Assessment based on mandatory auditions
- Examination of the formal requirements
- Final decision by the BMBWF
Further information can be found in FAQ 25).
23) How will I be informed about the results?
We will inform you and your academic supervisor in Austria via E-mail. Each of the steps described above in FAQ 22) may require up to 3-4 weeks.
24) What happens if I get the grant? What do I need to think about before coming to Austria?
After we have notified you about the award of your scholarship, you will receive a Letter of Award including information regarding the next steps. You will find information for OeAD scholarship holders and frequently asked questions here: https://oead.at/en/to-austria/scholars
25) What is important to consider when applying for a scholarship in the field of music?
Information for applicants in the field of music. ASEA-UNINET offers several opportunities for people studying and working in music disciplines.
- Music Practice Grant (grant for music practice). Duration: 9 months
- Full PhD Grant (for a complete Music PhD programme in Austria). Duration: 36 months
- Postdoc Grant (music research grant). Duration: 3-9 months
Musicians from Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam (Undergraduate, Graduate, Doctoral, or Postgraduate) wanting to study musical practice (instrumental and vocal performance, conducting, or composition) in Austria must, in addition to their formal application (via www.scholarships.at), participate in an auditions process. Responsibility for the audition process rotates between three music universities (KUG, mdw, and Mozarteum).
The audition for the scholarship call 2023/24 includes a mandatory interview, which takes place on 23rd/24th February 2023. Music Practice Grant applicants need to complete their application via the online tool linked in the official grant announcement by 15th January 2023 (23:59 CET). Submission of an application automatically registers the applicant for the mandatory interview. Successful applicants will be contacted by the Austrian music universities with their 15-minute timeslot a few weeks prior to the interview. Candidates who are successful in the interview will receive a Letter of Endorsement from the auditions committee. To finalise the application, the Letter of Endorsement needs to be submitted via www.scholarships.at by the applicant. A successful audition process only allows an applicant to be considered for the Ernst Mach Grant ASEA-UNINET grant and does not guarantee that the grant will be awarded.
For further information on the music universities or the mandatory auditions, please contact Ms. Anita Taschler (taschler[at]mdw.ac.at). Applicants should list Ms. Anita Taschler as the supervisor for the purposes of submitting the application.
Students from Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam intending to enrol in a degree-granting doctoral programme in Music (whether practice- or research-based) at a participating Austrian University must apply for the relevant programme at the prospective Austrian host university and also for the Ernst Mach - ASEA-UNINET Full PhD Grant (36 months). No audition through ASEA-UNINET is required for this type of grant. For such applicants, all requirements for the Full PhD Grant are applicable (instead of the Music Practice Grant requirements).
Postdoc Music researchers from Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam intending to conduct research in Austria should contact a potential supervisor at a participating Austrian University. Provided they are involved in teaching and/or research at an ASEA-UNINET member institution, they may apply for the Ernst Mach - ASEA-UNINET Postdoc Grant (3-9 months). For such applicants, all requirements for the Postdoc Grant are applicable (instead of the Music Practice Grant requirements).