The PhD plan

When enrolled in the PhD degree programme, an individual study programme (the “PhD plan”) must be drawn up. The individual PhD plan is the most important document during a PhD degree programme and must state the exact agreements relating to the PhD programme in question. The PhD plan must be signed by the main supervisor and the PhD student and must be approved by the head of Graduate School, following the recommendation of the chairman of the relevant field committee. The main supervisor is responsible for keeping the PhD plan updated, and the plan must be revised no less than in connection with the biannual assessment.

The PhD plan must include:

An agreement regarding the form and scope of the advising process

The PhD plan must include a description of mutual expectations to the advising process, including form and frequency of advising meetings.  

A description of the PhD project

The PhD plan must include an updated description of the PhD project.  

Information on the form of the PhD dissertation

The PhD plan must include an updated description of the PhD dissertation, which may take the form of either a monograph or a collection of papers including a summary and a conclusion.  

A list of planned participation in PhD courses (course work)

The PhD plan must include an updated list of the courses that the PhD student is expected to complete.

  1. The planned course work must correspond to at least 30 ECTS credits
  2. The courses must be completed with a satisfactory result
  3. The courses must be approved by the supervisor
  4. The courses may be spread in time throughout the entire PhD programme, or may be completed in units.
  5. All PhD students must undertake at least one independent teaching assignment relating to their PhD project.
  6. All PhD students must in addition undertake instructional teaching or similar assignments amounting to a total of no more than 840 hours.

Information on research stay abroad

The PhD plan must include an updated schedule for a long-term stay at a foreign university or a research institution at a similar level and must form part of the overall PhD study programme. One of the primary goals of such stay is establishment of cooperation with researchers in other research environments, and the stay is typically of a duration of 3-6 months.  

Information on teaching and dissemination obligations

The PhD plan must include a description as to how the requirement of gaining experience of teaching or other knowledge dissemination may be met, as stated in the Ministerial Order on the PhD Course of Study. For PhD students enrolled in a vocational PhD programme, the standard requirement of teaching and dissemination experience may be replaced or renounced in whole or in part according to agreement between the head of Graduate School and the involved external partners. The PhD plan must, as a minimum, state the type of activities and expected date for completion of such activities.

A funding plan (budget)

The Graduate School takes on the obligation to pay for expenditures required for completion of the PhD project, such as travel expenses, course participation, registration fees for conferences, research stays abroad etc. The costs of such academic activities of an employed PhD student are administered by the relevant Department, and the Department gets a refund when the PhD student has graduated. The budget is prepared by the Graduate School before enrolment, but the supervisor must report significant deviations from the original budget to the Graduate School.  

Copyright and intellectual property agreements (if any)

If the PhD degree programme is carried out in collaboration with external partners, the PhD plan must include a copyright and intellectual property agreement in writing. Agreements on copyright issues must be approved by the dean and must be in accordance with the recommendation of the head of Graduate School.  

Please contact the chairman of the relevant PhD programme committee for further information on the individual programmes (study programmes, supervisors, etc).