What does being a PhD student involve?

Being a PhD student involves both study and dissertation work. The studies can, for example, be courses, seminars, conferences or literature studies. In your dissertation you will

  • Plan research projects
  • Design experiments or data collections
  • Collect data
  • Process and interpret data
  • Compile results and discussions in different types of publications and presentations

Finally, you present your work in a licentiate or doctoral dissertation.

Throughout your time as a PhD student, you will have the support of your supervisors and your teachers, as well as other researchers active in your field of research, often both nationally and internationally.

For all PhD students, there must be a general and an individual study plan and during your education period we make annual follow-ups of the individual study plan.


General syllabus

There must be a general study plan for each subject where doctoral education is organized. It should describe the main content of the education, requirements for special qualifications, and other regulations needed. At the Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmay, there is a general study plan for pharmaceutical sciences and a general study plan for medical sciences.

Individual study plan

If you are admitted as a PhD student, you should also have an individual study plan. It should contain the commitments of both you and the university, as well as a timetable for your education. The plan is decided after discussions with you and your supervisor and it should be followed up annually and revised if necessary.

Licentiate and Doctorate

The licentiate degree corresponds to two years of full-time studies and the program is conclude by compiling your work in a licentiate dissertation, which is presented at a seminar where a grading committee decides whether or not to approve it.

The doctoral degree corresponds to four years of full-time studies. The doctoral thesis is usually a compliation thesis that consists of a frame story (coat) and one or more articles or scripts. You defend it at a thesis defence, where a grading committee decides whether or not to approve it.

At the Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, it is most common to be admitted to PhD studies with a doctorate as a goal.


All PhD students have one main supervisor and at least one assistant supervisor.

The primary task of your supervisor is to help you develop into an independent researcher with a scientific approach. This is done, among other things, by supporting you, encouraging you and being available for discussions, as well as ensuring that your thesis progresses at a reasonable rate, so that the work is completed within stipulated time.

Your supervisor will make it easier for you to participate in relevant postgraduate training courses, symposia and conferences, according to the individual study plan, and be responsible for the annual follow-up and half-time checks being performed and documented.

Last modified: 2022-08-23