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Doctoral studies

Once you have completed your Master’s degree, you can go on to third-cycle studies and specialise in an area you are interested in.

Doctoral (or PhD) studies normally comprise four years of full-time study, corresponding to 240 credits. You spend approximately one year on courses and seminars, and three years on your research project. You compile your research findings in a doctoral thesis. The thesis usually consists of a summary and synthesis together with articles that you have published in international scientific journals. You present and argue for your thesis at a public defence. If your thesis is approved and you have completed all the course components, you can receive your PhD degree.

Doctoral education is based essentially on the knowledge that students acquire during their undergraduate and graduate level studies or equivalent. In addition to the education at basic and advanced levels, the doctoral education in particular develops the knowledge and skills needed to carry out independent research.

The Doctoral education courses provide additional skills and broadening of the scientific outlook. Doctoral students are expected to study some pedagogical courses and to take an active part in seminars. Doctoral students often teach at undergraduate courses.

The PhD students work in close collaboration with their supervisors and colleagues in small research groups, which sometimes belong to larger international collaborations. Travels to conferences, research facilities and visits to other universities are natural ingredients of the education.

The learning outcomes for research studies

The doctoral education strives to educate licentiates and doctors so that they have the ability to conduct both high quality research and work with other advanced tasks in academia, industry and in the community, where research experience is essential. 

PhD studies aim to provide the following:

  • Specialised subject knowledge
  • The ability to think creatively and critically 
  • Training in planning, implementation and evaluation of research tasks and projects
  • Practice in presenting research findings, both orally and in writing, to various audiences

Read more about PhD studies at the Science faculty's webpage.


All vacancies at the department of physcis are listed on our job opportunities page

All vacancies at Lund University are posted in Lund university's central website