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Doctoral Education at Halmstad University

The University has the right to award doctoral degrees in three different areas: Information Technology, Innovation Sciences, Health and Lifestyle.

Doctoral education in the areas are provided in different subjects. Halmstad University is currently carrying out doctoral education in the following subjects:

  • Computer Science and Engineering
  • Health and Lifestyle
  • Informatics
  • Innovation Sciences
  • Signals and Systems Engineering

General study syllabus

Each respective subject has a general study syllabus. The general study syllabus provides information regarding the main content of the education, entry requirements, and other important information regarding the doctoral education. The Research and Education Board is responsible for approving the general study syllabus.

General study syllabi for subjects at doctoral level

The content and scope of the doctoral education

The doctoral education consists of taking courses, educational components, doing research and writing a thesis. Doctoral education culminates in a licentiate degree and/or in a PhD. The licentiate degree is comprised of 120 credits (two years full-time study). A PhD is awarded after the doctoral student has taken 240 credits (four years full-time study). What percentage of the education is achieved by taking courses and what percentage is achieved by writing a thesis varies from subject to subject. This information can be found in the general syllabus. The doctoral education can include compulsory courses. The course, Introductory Course for PhD Students 7.5 credits is a compulsory course at Halmstad University, regardless of subject.

Doctoral education is individual, meaning that the contents of the doctoral education are different for all doctoral students, even for those that are studying the same subject. An individual study plan must be established for each doctoral student. The study plan is to be jointly prepared by the doctoral student, their supervisor and the director of studies. The individual study plan must contain the University's and the doctoral student's commitments as well as a time plan for the student's doctoral education. Each individual study plan has to be approved by Halmstad University's Committee for Doctoral Education. The individual study plan must be followed up each year.

In order for a doctoral student to obtain a licentiate degree or PhD, he/she must have passed all courses that form part of the education under the general syllabus, as well as have finished their licentiate thesis, or doctoral thesis, which must have been orally defended and approved during a licentiate seminar or during a public defence of the doctoral thesis. If there are additional degree requirements for a specific subject, these are presented in the general syllabus. Once the doctoral student has completed the studies and wish to get a degree, he/she must apply for a degree certificate himself/herself.

Qualitative targets

The aim of doctoral education is for doctoral students to achieve qualitative targets. These qualitative targets describe what knowledge and skills the doctoral student is expected to have upon completing the education. National qualitative targets have been set in accordance with the Higher Education Ordinance, Appendix 2 System of Qualifications. See what these targets are in the documents below. Other aims for each respective subject, if there are any, can be found in the general syllabus. The doctoral student and his/her supervisor must also form a common understanding regarding what the qualitative targets entail for that specific doctoral student's doctoral education.

The individual study plan shall state what activities in the doctoral education contribute to the achievement of the qualitative targets.

Qualitative targets for licentiate degree

Outcomes

Knowledge and understanding

For a Degree of Licentiate the third-cycle student shall demonstrate knowledge and understanding in the field of research including current specialist knowledge in a limited area of this field as well as specialised knowledge of research methodology in general and the methods of the specific field of research in particular.

Competence and skills

For a Degree of Licentiate the third-cycle student shall

  • demonstrate the ability to identify and formulate issues with scholarly precision critically, autonomously and creatively, and to plan and use appropriate methods to undertake a limited piece of research and other qualified tasks within predetermined time frames in order to contribute to the formation of knowledge as well as to evaluate this work
  • demonstrate the ability in both national and international contexts to present and discuss research and research findings in speech and writing and in dialogue with the academic community and society in general, and
  • demonstrate the skills required to participate autonomously in research and development work and to work autonomously in some other qualified capacity.

Judgement and approach

For a Degree of Licentiate the third-cycle student shall

  • demonstrate the ability to make assessments of ethical aspects of his or her own research,
  • demonstrate insight into the possibilities and limitations of research, its role in society and
    the responsibility of the individual for how it is used, and
  • demonstrate the ability to identify the personal need for further knowledge and take responsibility for his or her ongoing learning.

Qualitative targets for doctoral degree

Outcomes

Knowledge and understanding

For the Degree of Doctor the third-cycle student shall

  • demonstrate broad knowledge and systematic understanding of the research field as well as advanced and up-to-date specialised knowledge in a limited area of this field, and
  • demonstrate familiarity with research methodology in general and the methods of the specific field of research in particular.

Competence and skills

For the Degree of Doctor the third-cycle student shall

  • demonstrate the capacity for scholarly analysis and synthesis as well as to review and assess new and complex phenomena, issues and situations autonomously and critically,
  • demonstrate the ability to identify and formulate issues with scholarly precision critically, autonomously and creatively, and to plan and use appropriate methods to undertake research and other qualified tasks within predetermined time frames and to review and evaluate such work,
  • demonstrate through a dissertation the ability to make a significant contribution to the formation of knowledge through his or her own research,
  • demonstrate the ability in both national and international contexts to present and discuss research and research findings authoritatively in speech and writing and in dialogue with the academic community and society in general,
  • demonstrate the ability to identify the need for further knowledge, and
  • demonstrate the capacity to contribute to social development and support the learning of others both through research and education and in some other qualified professional capacity.

Judgement and approach

For the Degree of Doctor the third-cycle student shall

demonstrate intellectual autonomy and disciplinary rectitude as well as the ability to make assessments of research ethics, and

demonstrate specialised insight into the possibilities and limitations of research, its role in society and the responsibility of the individual for how it is used.

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