Admission to doctoral degrees
In order to begin a doctoral degree, you must firstly be employed so that you can finance your studies and secondly be admitted to a doctoral programme. At University West there are four models for this:
- Employed as a doctoral student at University West and admitted to a doctoral programme at University West
- Employed as a doctoral student at University West and admitted to a doctoral programme at another university
- Employed as a doctoral student at another university and admitted to a doctoral programme at University West
- Employed as a doctoral student by some other employer (a so-called industry-employed doctoral student) and admitted to a doctoral programme at University West
Gaining the necessary employment and being admitted to a doctoral programme are to take place in parallel.
Eligibility and entry requirements
In order to be admitted to a doctoral programme, you must fulfil the general eligibility requirements for doctoral degree programmes. This means that you must hold a degree at master's level or have completed a minimum of 240 university credits. At least 60 credits must be at master's level.
You must also fulfil the specific eligibility requirements for the doctoral programme you have chosen. These are set out in the General Syllabus for each subject. In addition to this, you must be adjudged to have the capacity to complete the programme.
Employment as a doctoral student
You may be employed as a doctoral student at University West if there is a vacancy. Click on the link in the right hand column to see if there are any doctoral vacancies. At University West, there are no stipends, scholarships or educational grants for doctoral students to apply for.
At other universities, there may be different regulations for doctoral employees.
Doctoral employment often includes departmental service of some kind such as teaching. According to the Higher Education Ordinance, teaching and other departmental work should take up no more than 20 percent of working hours.
Industry-employed doctoral students
It is also possible to take a doctoral degree programme while under employment to either a private or public sector company or organisation. For this, your employer must consent to you carrying out doctoral studies and University West must make the decision to supervise your studies. Such matters are regulated by a special agreement drawn up among the parties. People with such an arrangement are usually called industry-employed doctoral students. The rule for them is that research is carried out for at least 50 percent of working hours during an academic year. An industry-employed doctoral student must have at least one supervisor at University West. His/her deputy supervisor is usually an employee of the company in question.
The general requirement is for documentation which verified that entry requirements have been fulfilled and degree work completed. More specific requirements are set out in the announcement.
If the number of eligible applicants is greater than the number of vacant places, a selection process takes place. Selection is then based upon an assessment of the applicant's ability to profit from the degree programme.
All of the applicants who fulfil the formal eligibility requirements are ranked according to certain fixed criteria which are set out in the General Syllabus for each particular subject. After this, the person highest on the list is called in for an interview at the relevant department. The candidate considered most suitable is recommended to a committee which makes decisions on admissions to doctoral programmes. At University West, it is the Research and Research Education Committee (FFUN) which makes such decisions. The relevant department head decides upon employment of doctoral students. It is not possible to be employed as a doctoral student without being admitted to a doctoral programme.