PhD Research

At Hebrew University we welcome change-makers in pursuit of deeper knowledge and broader experience, those who are passionate about reshaping our future on a local and global scale. Through experiential learning, critical thinking, and cutting-edge PhD research, you’ll be challenged to ask questions, rethink traditional solutions, and incubate ideas to produce innovative answers to some of today’s most pressing and evolving challenges.

PhD Degree Frameworks

Hebrew University offers various PhD degree paths for you to choose from, ranging from customized to structured degree offerings. Our individual PhD framework offers a great deal of flexibility; you can design a customized PhD program tailored to your own research interests and pursuits. This path relies heavily on your initiative to seek out a suitable research supervisor at Hebrew University and develop a research proposal. To pursue this option, visit our How to find a supervisor section below.

Hebrew University also offers a broad range of year-round research opportunities, across all fields of study. We welcome you to explore our continuously updated research opportunity database to view the options posted by our faculty.

Finally, if you are interested in pursuing a pre-designed PhD program, Hebrew University offers a number of structured PhD programs that integrate supervised, hands-on doctoral research with courses, lectures and seminars throughout your PhD degree studies.

Whether you choose an independent or a structured framework, you’ll have the opportunity to conduct original, independent PhD research under the mentorship of a dedicated research supervisor, with the goal of making a marked contribution to knowledge in your chosen field. 

Stages of PhD Studies

The five-year track for PhD degree studies at Hebrew University includes two stages:

Stage A is the foundational stage, extending for a maximum of 18 months.  During this time, you’ll focus on the development of your research topic and questions, and begin to complete a minimum of 12 credits of academic courses required by your PhD track. When ready, under the guidance of your PhD supervisor, you’ll submit a research proposal that demonstrates a feasible plan with a likelihood for success.

Once your proposal is approved, you’ll enter Stage B of your doctoral studies, during which you’ll continue to complete the required credits of supplementary course studies related to your PhD, while conducting research and writing your dissertation. This stage is often marked with abundant professional development opportunities, as well as the ongoing guidance of your supervisor and your appointed Advisory Committee. This Committee, experts in your research field, will periodically review your work and advise you on your independent research progress, through to the successful submission of your PhD dissertation.

Once complete, your dissertation will be evaluated by two appointed referees. If corrections are required, you’ll be allotted additional time to submit a corrected version for re-evaluation and final approval. When approved, you’ll be awarded your official Doctor of Philosophy degree certificate in our annual graduation ceremony.

Detailed information on program requirements and dissertation guidelines can be found on the website of the Authority for Research Students.

Structured PhD Degrees

PhD in Mathematics

Duration: Up to 5 years
Faculty/school: Faculty of Science, Einstein Institute of Mathematics
Language: English
Location: Edmond J. Safra Campus in Givat Ram 
Application deadline: Applications may be submitted year-round, though submission by January 31 is recommended for candidates wishing to begin their studies in the fall.  Later applications will be considered on a case-by-case basis.


Program Details
Ranked amongst the world’s top 25 mathematics research institutes, the Einstein institute of Mathematics offers candidates the opportunity to earn a PhD degree in a cooperative, immersive and stimulating environment, under the mentorship of leading scientists in the field. 

The Institute offers research opportunities in areas including the foundations of mathematics, logic, algebra, group theory, representation theory, differential geometry, algebraic topology, analysis, ergodic theory and dynamical systems, number theory, probability, combinatorics and game theory. Detailed information regarding these specific areas of research and their respective faculty can be found here.

Program requirements include the completion of 12 academic course credits (each credit point is roughly 1 hour per week for a semester-long course), and the submission of a research thesis upon conclusion of the degree. Additionally, students participate in frequent lecture series on current topics in mathematics, ongoing exchange and collaboration with visiting researchers from around the globe, thematic workshops, global conferences, and more.  For general information regarding PhD degree studies at Hebrew University, see here.

Career & Networking
Our graduates benefit from the broad applicability and high value of advanced knowledge of mathematics. Some can be found among the faculty of leading research institutions in Israel and abroad. Others pursue careers in the private sector in a variety of industries including the computer and technology sector, biological, cognitive and medical research, and economics and finance industries.

The Einstein Institute of Mathematics and its Faculty
The Einstein Institute of Mathematics is one of the world's leading research institutes. Founded in 1925 as part of the inauguration of the Hebrew University, its faculty and graduates include many of the world's leading mathematicians. Their achievements have been recognized by prestigious prizes including the Nobel Prize (in economics), Fields medal, Wolf and Israel Prizes, and numerous other awards.

Research areas represented at the Institute include foundations of mathematics, logic, algebra, group theory, representation theory, differential geometry, algebraic topology, analysis, ergodic theory and dynamical systems, number theory, probability, combinatorics and game theory.
The Institute offers B.Sc., M.Sc., and Ph.D. degrees (some of which are available primarily in Hebrew), hosts postdocs and visiting researchers from around the globe, and sponsors numerous seminars, workshops and conferences annually. Institute members are active in a variety of projects and initiatives to promote mathematics amongst students, teachers and the general public.

Admissions Requirements
Admission to PhD studies in mathematics is determined case-by-case, and is based on academic background and merit. Applications should be submitted via email to, with the following subject line: “Application letter for Last Name, First Name.” The application email should include the following:

  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Official transcripts from your master's degree.
  • Statement of research interests (maximum 2 pages). This should not be a research proposal, but rather a statement of the applicant’s interests and the level of knowledge in the area of interest.  
  • Names of three potential advisors. The applicant should emphasize in the statement of research interests how the proposed research relates to the suggested potential advisors. (This proposal is not binding and, if accepted, the student may work with other faculty members). 
  • Two or more recommendation letters. The recommenders should submit their letters directly to (as opposed to sending them to the applicant for submission), with the subject line "Recommendation Letter for Last Name, First Name." Applicants are encouraged to solicit letters from researchers who have had prior interaction with our department.

Once candidates complete the application process within the institute, the next step is to apply for admission as a PhD candidate through Hebrew University’s Authority for Research Students, the academic body that oversees PhD studies at the university.

Tuition & Scholarship
Students admitted to PhD studies in mathematics will receive:

  • Full tuition scholarship
  • Living stipend (with a supplement for families)
  • Support toward housing expenses
  • Local health insurance coverage
  • Stipend for travel to/from Israel

Subject to successful academic progress, the above-detailed support will be provided for three years. In some cases, candidates may request a 4th year extension.

Further Information


PhD in Brain Sciences

Duration: 5 years, direct PhD track
Faculty/School: The Edmond and Lily Safra Center for Brain Sciences
Language: English
Location: Edmond J. Safra Campus
Application Deadline: February 28, 2022

Program Details
As a global leader in computational neuroscience, The Edmond and Lily Safra Center for Brain Sciences (ELSC) boasts one of the most diverse PhD programs in the field, anchored in an interdisciplinary approach to neuroscience that combines theoretical, biological and cognitive perspectives. Our intensive 5-year direct PhD program offers a deep and comprehensive understanding of the brain’s functions. Over the course of your studies, you’ll learn computational neuroscience and its application in understanding how the nervous system orchestrates disparate functions including perception and action, learning and memory, thought and creativity. You’ll attend courses such as “Theoretical Neural and Cognitive Sciences” and “Machine Learning and Information Processing,” and conduct hands-on thesis research under the supervision of our leading brain researchers. In the spirit of international collaboration, you’ll benefit from scholarships and travel fellowships to attend international conferences and visit brain research centers around the world.
For additional information about our direct PhD program in brain sciences and specific courses of study, please visit here.

Career & Networking
At ELSC, we prepare our students to take on leading roles within the international brain research community. Through exposure to the various disciplines and access to some of the world’s leading brain researchers and their work, you’ll solidify your research goals and begin to determine your future career path. Over a third of our PhD program graduates have gone on to become independent researchers in neuroscience at leading Israeli and global universities. Over 40% of our graduates have attained professorships with institutions around the globe, and most others have secured senior positions in the high-tech industry.

The Edmond and Lily Safra Center for Brain Sciences and its Faculty
Located in the heart of the Edmond J. Safra campus, ELSC is home to world-renowned scientists, stellar faculty, and talented postdoctoral scholars and students from across the globe, all of whom comprise our internationally acclaimed brain research community. Encompassing a broad range of disciplines including anatomy, physiology, computer science, physics and cognitive sciences, ELSC sustains a strong interdisciplinary foundation upon which leading scientists from these varying disciplines conduct groundbreaking research on the relationships between brain computations, neuronal circuits, and behavior.

ELSC houses a number of expertise centers including a neuroimaging unit, a core microscopy unit, a fabrication lab, and a vector core facility, making our ultra-modern research facilities and state-of-the-art laboratories part and parcel of the ELSC research experience for faculty and students alike. To learn more about our distinguished faculty and the ways in which they are revolutionizing neuroscience research at ELSC, please visit the Center’s website.

Admission Requirements
ELSC welcomes direct PhD applicants who present proof of:

  • A bachelor’s degree in one of the following fields: natural sciences, mathematics, social sciences, engineering, computer sciences, and medicine.
  • A minimum cumulative GPA of 85.
  • English Language Proficiency: International students who are not native English speakers are required to complete one of the following exams: TOEFL (minimum score of 89), IELTS (7), AMIR (220), AMIRAM (120), or European standards (B2). Candidates whose previous studies are from English-speaking institutes in countries such as UK, USA, Australia, etc. are exempt from presenting proof of English proficiency.

In addition, applicants must submit the following application materials:

  • Curriculum Vitae
  • One-page statement of scientific interests
  • Official transcripts from each university attended
  • Two academic letters of recommendation

Applications to the ELSC direct PhD program are submitted online. For additional information and details on how to apply, please visit here.

Tuition & Scholarships

  • Full tuition scholarships are granted during the first two years of study, and are extended for three additional years following acceptance and registration for PhD studies.
  • Stipends of approximately 7,100 NIS per month are offered during the first 2 years, and approximately 3,100 NIS per month is awarded for the following 3 years once a candidate has registered for PhD degree studies.
  • Additional support is granted to candidates by the labs (up to 10,000 NIS).
  • Annual travel grants are awarded for the purpose of attending international conferences and visiting collaborating labs abroad.

In addition, ELSC encourages its students to apply for prestigious doctoral scholarships from both Israeli and international organizations. For further information regarding tuition and financial aid, please visit the scholarship page on the program’s website.

Further Information


Cotutelle Degrees

If the prospect of conducting a portion of your PhD research at an additional university abroad interests you, a Cotutelle program may be worth considering. Cotutelle, the French term for ‘joint enrollment,’ is a framework that enables you to complete your PhD studies in Israel and abroad, offering you joint research supervision by a faculty member at each university, and awarding you a PhD degree from both institutions upon successful completion. Learn more about Cotutelle degrees at Hebrew University here.

Joint PhD Degree Studies

In addition to the Cotutelle framework, Hebrew University offers established joint PhD degree programs across all fields of study, run in collaboration with existing partner institutions worldwide.You’ll be jointly enrolled at two universities and required to spend a minimum of one year at each institution, gaining exposure to varying technologies, research methods, and academic perspectives under the supervision of faculty from both institutions. Upon successfully completing the program, you’ll earn a joint PhD degree from two universities. Learn more about our various joint PhD degree programs here.

Admission to PhD Studies 

To be admitted to PhD studies at Hebrew University, you’ll be required to complete the following steps:

Identify your Research Topic

The university offers a wide range of PhD studies acrossapproximately 80 fields. We welcome you to explore our full list of departments in order to determine the best fit for your academic aspirations and research goals.

Secure a PhD Supervisor

After identifying your preferred research topic, your next step is to secure a supervisor to oversee your PhD research. This is an independent process meant to be completed at your own initiative. Keep in mind that it is a competitive one, as our renowned researchers receive a high volume of applications from around the globe. To get you started, we’ve put together some helpful tips on How to Find a PhD Supervisor .

Apply for Admission

Once you’ve identified your preferred field of research and secured your PhD supervisor, your next step is to apply for admission as a PhD candidate through Hebrew University’s Authority for Research Students, the academic body that oversees PhD studies at the university. The Authority for Research Students is divided into two committees:

  • Humanities and Social Sciences: Humanities, Social Sciences, Law, Education, Social Work, and Business Administration.
  • Experimental Sciences: Natural Sciences (including Mathematics), Engineering and Computer Sciences, Brain Sciences, Agriculture (including Animal Science, Food and Nutrition, and Environment) and the Medical Sciences (including Dental Medicine Sciences, Pharmacology and Pharmaceutics, Public Health and Occupational Therapy).

Details regarding admissions and criteria for international students can be found on the website of the Authority for Research Students. Note that policies and procedures may differ slightly between the Humanities/Social Sciences and Experimental Sciences tracks.

Register as a PhD Candidate

Finally, upon successful admission to PhD studies at Hebrew University, the Authority for Research Students will issue you a formal letter of acceptance. (Keep this handy, as you will need it when applying for your student visa). Additionally, you will be required to register annually as a Hebrew University PhD candidate.

Tuition Fees

Detailed information regarding tuition fees and payment schedules for PhD candidates at Hebrew university can be found here, on the website of the Student Administration.


A range of scholarship funding is available for PhD students, either through the research budget of your supervisor, or through internal and external funding schemes. We’re approaching the launch of our brand-new scholarship portal in English, and we encourage you to check our website regularly for updates in this regard. Till then, you are welcome to discuss these possibilities with your supervisor, or to consult with the Authority for Research Students.

Student Support Services

Hebrew University proudly offers ongoing social and logistical support through our Office of Student Life, dedicated to assisting you from the moment you are admitted to studies at Hebrew University. From pre-departure preparations to visa applications, health insurance coverage and housing inquiries, our devoted Student Life team is here to answer all of your questions and provide you with essential information to make your relocation as smooth as possible. Once you arrive in Jerusalem, and through to the completion of your degree, the Student Life staff will remain a constant in your HUJI experience, continuing to support you and provide access to enriching social activities, cultural excursions, and more. 

Your Future

Through PhD research at Hebrew University you’ll learn to navigate the professional world with integrity and confidence. The majority of PhD degree holders in Israel have earned their degrees at Hebrew University, and our alumni hold key positions on a global stage in academia, public service and the business sector. As a PhD graduate, you’ll be skilled at critical inquiry, innovative thinking, deep analysis and creative interpretation.

Once a Hebrew University alum, we’ll continue to support you as a dedicated member of our ever-growing alumni community. You’ll have access to career support and guidance, practical resources, and countless networking opportunities with fellow graduates and professional mentors. To get involved, visit our alumni page for further details.

Further Information 

Interested in learning more? Feel free to contact the Authority for Research Students with any questions you may have.