Doctoral Programme in Life and Earth Sciences
From the academic year 2022/2023 starting a doctoral programme in Life and Earth Sciences, which includes five specialities:
- Biodiversity and Ecological Sustainability (Institute of Ecology and Earth Sciences)
- Geography (Institute of Ecology and Earth Sciences)
- Geology (Institute of Ecology and Earth Sciences)
- Molecular Biosciences (Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology)
- Genomics (Institute of Genomics)
The doctoral studies focus on the doctoral thesis and research-related activities. The doctoral student can make individual and purposeful choices in their study plan in collaboration with their supervisor(s).
The programme includes courses and training for 30 ETCS. The study module includes speciality-specific courses (15 ECTS) and transferrable skills training (15 ECTS).
The progress review committee assesses doctoral students' advancement about their study plan, the programme's learning outcomes, and required activities within the programme. In addition, specialities can have specific requirements and suggestions for their doctoral students.
Programme aims and requirements
Doctoral studies prepare students for employment as teaching or research staff at universities and other research institutions, or as leading specialists outside the academic sphere. Doctoral studies are research-based studies at the topmost level of higher education, during which the doctoral student acquires internationally-recognised research and development skills, a broad, scientific worldview, and competencies in management and pedagogical work.
On successful completion of the programme of doctoral studies, the doctoral student:
1. will excel at their field of research in terms of knowledge and skills, will publish original research results in international peer-reviewed publications, and be up to date with their speciality’s latest research trends;
2. will inter-relate and develop their research field’s research methods, be able to pose hypotheses and plan and conduct experiments to test the validity of hypotheses, as well as understanding the content and scope of interdisciplinary knowledge and research methods;
3. will be able to analyse, synthesise and evaluate knowledge-rich and novel ideas, identify and formulate research questions and will be able to see how the results of their research could be applied;
4. will be clear, logical and understandable in both their oral and written communication;
5. will be ethical in their conduct, and follow good research practice and other best practice guidelines put forth by the university, good data management practice, and intellectual property and data protection policies;
6. will initiate, plan, apply and critique research and development work, as well as being able to give and receive constructive feedback;
7. will be independent, creative and innovative in the academic work, and capable of making strategic decisions;
8. will have acquired management and teamwork skills, and when carrying out teamwork will be open, flexible, and proactive;
9. will be able to evaluate their own needs for self-improvement;
10. will pass on their knowledge through teaching, supervision or other means in both an educational and scientific context, and actively participate in the promotion of their speciality.
Research, Development and Creative Activities (RDC) Module
The aim of the module is to enhance and strengthen speciality-specific and field-specific knowledge and skills. The aim of the research and development work is for the doctoral student to acquire the skills and techniques needed for planning and carrying out research, and for analysing and presenting its results. As the result of their research and development work, the doctoral student will complete an independent study in which they present a reasoned, original solution to an important problem or problems in their specific research field.
The volume of this module is 5460 hours (corresponding to 210 ECTS).
The doctoral student who successfully completes the module:
- will have a deep knowledge of their speciality and be up to date with its latest research trends;
- will be able to creatively identify and formulate research questions;
- will initiate and plan research and development projects which lead to new knowledge and solutions;
- will have a good grasp of and apply different methodologies in their research area;
- will be able to analyse and synthesise information gained in the course of research and that known previously;
- will be able to evaluate their research field’s scientific results in a broader (including digital revolution and green transition) context and integrate them with other disciplines;
- will formulate and express their research results in an international level paper;
- will be able to debate and present their research results at international scientific events;
- will be able to critically evaluate and analyse research results, and give substantiated feedback about them;
- will be able to give evaluations concerning research ethics, and will understand the responsibility of creating and using research results;
- will be able to evaluate the impact of scientific achievements in the wider societal context and will participate in the popularisation of their speciality;
- will be capable of taking strategic decisions and of working independently in an international work or academic environment;
- will be able to evaluate their own needs for self-improvement and plan accordingly;
- will have good communication, management and teamwork skills;
- will be able to pass on their knowledge through teaching or supervising student work and by promoting their speciality.
The doctoral student shall:
1. write a doctoral thesis that complies with the requirements set in the Regulations for Doctoral Studies, and comply with the progress review regulations set at their faculty;
2. give a presentation at at least one high-level international specialist conference and take part in international discussions related to research work;
3. actively participate in their chosen speciality’s doctoral seminars throughout the duration of their studies and be required to give at least four presentations at these seminars;
4. actively participate in their faculty or institute’s research and development work, including contributing to the organisation of activities and participating in events at the Centre for Doctoral Studies;
5. pass on their knowledge through teaching or supervising student work and by promoting their speciality;
6. analyse their progress and professional development in conjunction with their supervisor and report on the progress of their research and other academic activities at a designated progress review appraisal.
The aim of the module is to give the doctoral student the opportunity to develop transferable skills, including getting an overview of research ethics, learning how to create interdisciplinary connections between different areas of research, and developing their skills at self-expression, management and teaching. A further aim of the module is to develop the doctoral student’s knowledge of their speciality and field of research.
The volume of this module is 780 hours (corresponding to 30 ECTS).
On successful completion of the module, the doctoral student:
- will demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of their speciality and research field, and will be able to identify and critically evaluate various methods of scientific analysis;
- will have developed their skill at international academic publishing and be able to analyse their own academic writing ability;
- will analyse and develop their presentation skills, apply good practices relating to both verbal and written academic discussion, and apply recognised principles and methods of giving feedback;
- will be able to analyse and substantiate choices relating to research ethics, intellectual property rights, data protection and data maintenance;
- will be able to analyse and inter-relate different methods of teamwork and management (both on an organisational and personal level)
- will be able to analyse and inter-relate the knowledge necessary for teaching, supervising, or promoting their speciality.
The doctoral student shall:
- complete the course “Introduction to doctoral studies in science and technology” (3 ECTS) during the first year;
- complete 12 ECTS credits’ worth of courses to develop general competencies during the course of their studies;
- complete 15 ECTS credits’ worth of compulsory courses for their chosen speciality;
acquire the specialised and transferable competencies and attitudes set out in the learning outcomes for the programme and module, both by way of self-analysis and by following the individual plan composed in collaboration with their supervisor(s).
The doctoral student shall, in collaboration with their supervisor, specify a detailed timeline of planned activities in their individual plan. In the Transferable Skills sub-module, the doctoral student shall choose, together with their supervisor, the necessary choices of subjects, events at the Centre for Doctoral Studies, local and international events, etc, for the completion of their doctoral thesis and professional development, to make up 15 ECTS credits in total. In the Specialist Knowledge sub-module, the doctoral student shall choose 15 credits’ worth of courses from the prescribed list.