Digital Methodology in the Humanities and Cultural Sciences (M.A.)

The most important facts at a glance:


Master of Arts (M.A.)

of the JGU and the Hochschule Mainz
Standard period of studies:

4 semesters


Winter semester

Admission restrictions:

open admission

(starting from winter semester 2023/24; subject to the approval of all relevant committees)


You find information on the application procedure for international students here.

Applicants with foreign certificates: Language of instruction: German
Required language certificate: DSH-2

Winter semester: April 1 - May 15

Required Bachelor's degree:

Bachelor of Arts in the humanities or a Bachelor of Science in applied computer science or a subject with a main focus on information science.


Digital Methodology in the Humanities and Cultural Sciences


Faculty 07: History and Cultural Studies


The accreditation of study programmes for Bachelor and Master Degrees constitutes as a precondition for the granting of state approval.

Subject Matter

The Master's program "Digital Methodology in the Humanities and Cultural Sciences" was offered for the first time in the winter semester of 2016/17 as a consecutive, research-oriented program. A Bachelor's degree is required either in the humanities or cultural sciences, in a subject of applied computer science or in a subject with a special focus on information science. The innovative degree program is limited to an initial 24 students per year starting in the winter semester.

The aim of the degree program "Digital Methodology in the Humanities and Cultural Sciences" is to apply innovative digital methods as a way of solving questions in the humanities and cultural studies. Graduates can assess the methods as regards their effectiveness and continue to develop them according to their needs. The program connects applied computer science with the humanities and cultural studies and deals with research problems in the scope of digital methodology rather than within the disciplines. Students who are enrolled in the course in Mainz will therefore gain a comprehensive insight into the various fields of digital humanities. According to their interests, students can choose from a wide range of digital methods in the four knowledge domains: text and language, spatial objects and music and media informatics. In the whole of Germany, this kind of variety within a Master's program is only offered in Mainz.

Another special aspect is the fact that, depending on their Bachelor's degree, students will learn the necessary basics of computer science or the humanities. To do so, they will either attend specific introductory courses in computer science or in the humanities. The degree program is highly application-oriented and, with its high proportion of practice classes, block seminars and a ten-week internship, provides students with a space to implement their theoretical knowledge and try out their own technical solutions.
As students have the chance to work in small groups and are closely involved with the research activities of their teachers, they are provided with excellent conditions that enable them to establish themselves in this new and highly sought-after field of work.

The way in which this new Master's program has been designed enables it to incorporate any developments that may have occurred as a result of scientific information being widely digitized. Current research approaches in the humanities and cultural sciences are dealing with increasingly large volumes of data, are deriving subject-specific relevant questions from these digital materials and are developing innovative analytical methods and modified ways to communicate research results on the basis of up-to-date information technology concepts. Digital methodology therefore creates a link between the increasing number of digital sources and the spectrum of innovative analytics. It does so against the background of dynamically developing web technologies.
Located at Faculty 07 of the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, it is designed as an inter-university degree program with the Faculty of Technology at the University of Applied Sciences Mainz. The program features a joint cooperation between four prominent research institutions in the humanities and cultural studies in Mainz: the Academy of Sciences and Literature Mainz (ADW), the Leibniz Institute for European History Mainz (IEG), the Institute for Historical Regional Studies at the University of Mainz e. V. (IGL) and the Roman-Germanic Central Museum and Leibniz Research Institute for Archaeology (RGZM). The program is supported and organized by mainzed, the Mainz Centre for Digitality in the Humanities and Cultural Sciences, through which the institutions also involved in the program coordinate their research work and realize personal and professional synergies.

Master entrance requirements

In order to be admitted to the integrated Master's program "Digital Methodology in the Humanities and Cultural Sciences", students must either have a Bachelor's degree in the humanities or cultural sciences, in a subject in applied computer science, in a subject with a special focus on information science or a degree obtained either at a university in Germany or abroad, provided that it is a similar degree.

Students are required to have sufficient active and passive English language skills in order for them to be able to read English literature and to participate in courses in English; this does not mean completing coursework and examinations in English. The module "Digital Methodology" is an exception, especially where English Linguistics is the main focus. In this case, English language skills of at least a B2 level are recommended.

Graded selection interviews [starting in the winter semester of 2017/18], that last 15 to 20 minutes, determine whether or not the applicant is adequately qualified in order to successfully complete the Master's program in "Digital Methodology in Humanities and Cultural Studies". In this selection interview, the requirements needed for this Master's program and the expectations of the applicant are discussed. Assessment criteria include the students' interdisciplinary competences and interests as well as their ability to reflect upon their own professional qualifications in an interdisciplinary context and to develop their own career perspectives as regards the Digital Humanities degree program.

  1. For the selection interviews, certain members of the examination board are appointed.
  2. The selection interview is conducted by two examiners in accordance with article 8, paragraph 2 and an expert observer (if possible the heads of the student advising offices). The interview can be carried out with up to five applicants at once.
  3. Applicants will be invited to the selection interview in writing by one of the selection commissioners, and will be informed as to when and where the interview will take place. An invitation is considered to have been sent out on time if it was sent out at least 10 working days prior to the selection interview.
  4. If the applicant does not meet the admission requirements, the university will inform him or her in writing. If the applicant fails to attend the interview on the specified date without providing a reasonable excuse or if he or she cancels the interview without providing a reasonable excuse, he or she will not be considered suitable.
  5. A written record must be made of the selection interview. The record must include:
    a) the names of the examiner and the assistant,
    b) the name of the applicant,
    c) the date and time (beginning and end) of the selection interview,
    d) the subject matter of the selection interview,
    e) the final decision in terms of the grade of the selection interview.
    The examiner and assistant have to sign the written record. The applicant may view it upon request.
  6. The selection interview is evaluated by the examiners in consultation with the assistant. The Chair of the examination board will inform the applicant on the results in writing. Notices of rejection are to be accompanied by instructions on how to appeal.
  7. Article 3, paragraph 2; Article 12, paragraph 5, Article 16 and Article 18 apply to the selection interview.

Another requirement that students must fulfill in order to be admitted to the Master's program "Digital Methodology in the Humanities and Cultural Sciences" is that they are still eligible for this program. In order to prove this, they must submit a statement confirming this.

If students are unable to submit a degree certificate as proof of a having completed a Bachelor's degree by the end of the application deadline, they are entitled to apply on the basis of a certificate that corresponds to at least 135 credit points and that was issued by the responsible office of their previous university. If the degree program uses a restricted admission policy, students must pay attention to the provisions of the current version of the university’s selection statutes (Hochschulauswahlsatzung); in this case, the final result of the Bachelor's degree will not be taken into account during the selection process. If an applicant is selected on the basis of the document specified in sentence 1, they will be admitted on the condition that they submit a degree certificate within the period specified in their notification of admission. If this proof is not provided on time, the student's admission expires.

The application and admission procedure is carried out by the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz. All the required documents are to be submitted here on time. Even if the admission requirements are met, students will only be admitted to the Master's program "Digital Methodology in the Humanities and Cultural Sciences" if the selection and admission procedure has been successfully completed. The selection process is regulated by the university’s selection statutes (Hochschulauswahlsatzung) of Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz.

Enrollment takes place at the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz as well as at the University of Applied Sciences Mainz.


The International Office offers counselling for international students about the application process and general information.

The Academic Advisory Office offers specific information on the subject (List available in German only).

The Student representatives give information from a student perspective (List available in German only).