FAQ - Ernst Mach Grant for studying at an Austrian University of Applied Sciences
These FAQs refer to the call for the Austrian academic year 2023/2024 only!
1) General remarks
Please have in mind that your application will be read by several persons (e.g. our evaluators, the experts, etc.). Therefore, we kindly ask you to make sure 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, we recommend to go through a careful editing phase!
2) Who can apply for this grant?
Students who are studying a Master's or a Bachelor's programme at a university in one of the defined countries of origin. Bachelor students must also have successfully completed at least 4 semesters to apply for the Ernst Mach Grant for studying at an Austrian University of Applied Sciences (Fachhochschule). The maximum age is 35 years. Applicants need to be accepted as exchange scholars from an Austrian university of applied sciences (Fachhochschule) before applying for the Ernst Mach grant. Please read the grant regulations carefully and make sure you are eligible before applying.
3) Are all Austrian universities eligible as host institutions for an application?
No. You can only apply for stays at universities of applied sciences, called Fachhochschulen in German. Universities of applied sciences are special universities and offer degrees only from a limited field of studies. For an overview on eligible universities and their programmes, please visit http://www.fachhochschulen.ac.at/en
4) I already have an acceptance letter from an Austrian university. How do I know if I am eligible?
You are only eligible if you are accepted as an exchange student or free mover for an exchange stay at a university of applied sciences. The Ernst Mach Grant for studying at an Austrian University of Applied Sciences (Fachhochschule) is aimed at exchange or visiting scholars. In most cases the Austrian universities only accept exchange scholars who come from foreign partner universities. In exceptional cases they also accept so-called free movers. A confirmation of acceptance as an exchange student or free mover has to be enclosed with the application.
5) Can I use this grant to enroll as a regular student in a Master's or Bachelor's degree in Austria?
No. The Ernst Mach grant is not intended to finance a complete Master's or Bachelor's degree in Austria. The Ernst Mach incoming grants are aimed at visiting or exchange scholars for a short study stay only. For more information on other Austrian grant opportunities, please visit the online database www.grants.at
6) Can I apply if I already study at an Austrian university of applied sciences?
No. The Ernst Mach incoming grant programmes are aimed at visiting scholars for a short study stay up to 10 months. If you are a regular student at an Austrian university, you are not eligible. For more information on other Austrian grant opportunities, please visit our online database: www.grants.at
7) Can I apply if I already study at an Austrian university of applied sciencesas an exchange student?
No, you need to apply before the beginning of your planned scholarship stay.
8) Can I apply if I currently study at an Austrian university or have studied in Austria?
If you are a regular student at an Austrian university, you are not eligible. Applicants who are already permanently resident in Austria or who have completed their academic education mainly in Austria are not eligible to apply. For more information on other Austrian grant opportunities, please visit our online database www.grants.at
9) Can I apply for stays starting earlier than September 2023?
No. The current call for applications for this grant is for stays during the Austrian academic year 2023/24, which starts in September 2023. So the earliest you can come to Austria would be September 2023.
10) Can the OeAD help me to find a university in Austria that suits me?
Unfortunately not, please contact one of the participating Austrian universities of applied sciences beforehand; they have to support your application as exchange student. You can also ask at the international office of your home university if there is an existing cooperation with an Austrian university of applied sciences to support your application. For an overview on eligible universities of applied sciences and their programmes, please visit http://www.fachhochschulen.ac.at/en
11) Do I have to use the provided templates for the letters of recommendation?
No, it is not mandatory to use our templates. The letters can be freely written, but please keep in mind that they have to contain the relevant information. In addition, they must bear the letterhead, date and signature of the person recommending or supervising the applicant and the stamp of the university or department. The letters must not be older than six months at the time of the application.
12) Can my professors send the letters of recommendation directly to the OeAD?
Normally, you will have to upload your letters of recommendation into 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 us. Note that we have to upload the letters to your online application file, so that you can submit your application. Therefore, we cannot guarantee confidentiality to your professors, because you will have access to your online application, including the letters, at all times. Please make sure that the letters arrive before the deadline. Documents that arrive after the deadline cannot be accepted. Please have the letters sent to firstname.lastname@example.org as scanned attachments.
13) Is there a template for a learning agreement?
No, you will be asked to upload a written confirmation of your home university that the exams passed in Austria will be recognized by your home university. Although there is no special form requested for this confirmation, some Austrian universities of applied sciences prefer a learning agreement. In that case please ask at your Austrian target university to provide a template for a learning agreement.
14) Do I need to translate my documents?
If the documents are in English a translation into German is not necessary. If your documents are neither in English nor German, please upload a copy of the original document and also provide an English or German translation of the document.
15) Do I have to submit officially certified translations?
No. If the original document is not English or German, please upload a copy of the original and a rough English or German translation. An officially certified translation is not required.
16) Do I have to submit any official testing certificates to proof my langue proficiency?
No. There is no need to submit any official testing certificates, such as TOEFL, etc., but you should have sufficient knowledge of English in the respective subject area.
17) Which Transcript of Records do I need to upload?
The Transcript of Records must be from the current or last semester. If you are in the Master's programme, you must also upload the Bachelor's degree certificate and the most recent Transcript of Records.
18) Can I upload a copy of an identity card instead of a passport?
A valid, biometric passport must be uploaded. An identity card is only acceptable for applications from the EU.
19) Will digital signatures be accepted?
We have to check if documents are authentic and correct - only original signatures or certified digital signatures will be accepted - if it is a digital non-certified signature, you have to provide a proof that it is indeed a confirmation of the person/institution (institution stamp on the document). If it cannot be verified that it is an official document, the application will be considered as formally invalid.
20) Why are own funds required for this scholarship?
The scholarship rate might not cover all expenses for your research stay in Austria. In addition to your stay in Austria, you might have various expenses before you are able to enter Austria. Furthermore, our grant rates are based on the assumption that actual living costs in Austria are higher than the grant itself. 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 more than EUR 300/month);
- travel costs to the Austrian representative authority to receive your visa;
- journey to Austria;
- down payment for your accommodation.
21) Do I have to provide evidence of my own funds and my living costs in Austria?
You do not need to provide evidence of own funds to the OeAD agency. However, the Austrian residence authority might require proof of your funds in case of increased living costs (e.g. for health insurance or when your accommodation costs more than EUR 300/month).
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 prospect of success. However, the scholarship rate will be reduced in accordance with your estimation if the scholarship rate is higher than your actual living costs.
22) Is it possible to raise the scholarship rate if I can account for increased expenses, for example if I bring my family along?
No. Unfortunately, it is not possible to increase the scholarship rate.
23) Is it possible to hand in documents after the deadline?
No, documents submitted after the deadline will not be accepted.
24) When should I submit my application?
The application deadline for this grant is March 1st, 2023, 23:59 (CET - Central European Time) for all applications for stays during the academic year 2023/24. After the deadline all applications will be examined by experts. The final results of this examination will be published at the beginning of July 2023.
25) Who decides if I will be awarded with a scholarship?
First, the formal criteria of your application will be evaluated by us. All formally valid applications will then be evaluated by experts from the respective field. Based on the results of this evaluation by experts, the selection committee will award the best applicants with a scholarship.
26) When will the results be announced?
All formally valid applications will be evaluated by experts from the respective field. The results of this evaluation are expected to be published at the beginning of July 2023.
27) How will I be informed about the results?
We will inform you and your academic supervisor in Austria via e-mail.
28) What does it mean if an application has been rejected as incomplete and thus formally invalid?
Even if all documents have been uploaded, an application may still be classified as incomplete, for example if informations in the application are missing or the planned research stay has not been sufficiently described.
29) 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