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Programme structure - PhD

What makes up the educational component? What is common to everyone and what applies to your department?

Structure of the PhD programme

The PhD programme has a nominal length of study of 3 years. A PhD degree requires admission to a PhD programme, and concludes with a public trial lecture and defence.

In addition to writing a doctoral thesis, PhD Candidates must also complete an educational component equivalent to six months’ work, or 30 credits. The educational component is made up of compulsory activities and elective courses/seminars.


The doctoral programme at the Faculty of Humanities is organised as a single PhD programme, but the faculty’s seven departments are responsible for follow-up of the candidates and the education offered to the candidates.

As a PhD Candidate you can participate in education offered at all departments and also make use of external education.

The education offered on the PhD programme and by the individual departments varies from semester to semester. Information about education for doctoral candidates is regularly updated. Please note that requirements in relation to enrolment, active participation and awarding of credits can vary.

It is important that you familiarize yourself with the provisions that apply to the organised research training at the Faculty of Humanities. The PhD programme is regulated by the:

Supplementary provisions for the PhD programme at the Faculty of Humanities:

1) Educational component

The educational component shall, together with the thesis work, provide an education of a high academic standard and include the completion of a scientific research project, training in the dissemination of academic knowledge and an introduction to research ethics, the philosophy of science and scientific methods.

The nominal length of study of the PhD programme is 3 years. The educational component corresponds to 30 credits.

Credits are allocated based on the ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System). Thirty credits correspond to six months’ work, i.e. 750–900 hours. One credit corresponds to 25 to 30 hours of work.

Research courses that are included as part of the educational component must be of such a scope that they are worth at least 1 credit. Half credits are not given.

A candidate’s own efforts and active participation are required in order to be granted credits from the programme’s educational component. A theory syllabus, requirements for submission, presentation of own text, critique of other people’s text, and attendance requirements are all specified for the individual courses (seminar/course/conference).

The PhD Coordinator at the department is responsible for approving individual courses and the candidate's educational component as a whole.

See also the departments’ own requirements for the educational component

Only seminars/courses/conferences/etc. that correspond to a total of 30 credits qualify and are documented as part of the candidate’s educational component.

Structure of the educational component of the PhD programme



Credits, courses

Credits in total


General initial courses, Faculty of Humanities

5 credits (ECTS)

Introductory seminar

2 days

2 credits (ECTS)


Theory of knowledge

2 days




1 day



Participation in an international conference

Min. 4

International conference with paper/lecture/abstract





Min. 2

Dissemination course, feature articles, lectures, other




Thesis seminar


See specifications for each department

General requirements: Presentation of the candidate’s own text at least twice, comments to other texts at least once.



Mid-term evaluation (compulsory from 2013)


Research training courses


Compulsory courses at the department

The smallest course scope is 1 credit



Elective part

Elective research training courses

Internal and external. The smallest course scope is 1 credit. The scope of credits for elective courses will depend on the number of credits that are committed to compulsory courses.



Courses in general skills/generic courses

E.g. English language courses, use of reference tools etc.



Educational component in total

30 credits (ECTS)


2) Approval and documentation

Candidates are responsible for obtaining approval and documentation for all credit-bearing participation and for the safekeeping of copies of all documentation throughout their PhD education.

Before submitting the thesis for assessment, candidates must complete the documentation form listing all documented courses, seminars, etc. with details of the title, type of participation, credits etc.

The form must be signed by the PhD Coordinator, who will then confirm that the educational component of the PhD programme has been completed.

Candidates must enclose this form with the application for assessment of the thesis. It is not necessary to attach any additional documentation.

Documentation form (rtf) (in Norwegian only)

3) Studentweb

Studentweb is an online service introduced in 2003, where students can log in to administer their own studies and gain access to important personal information. This service is now also available for you as a PhD candidate at the Faculty of Humanities. In Studentweb, you can update your contact information, obtain an overview of the information connected to your doctoral agreement, as well as access your registered data.

Other courses must be approved by the department in advance before you can get credit for participating. In Studentweb, you will find your number of approved credits (ECTS), so that you can keep track of your educational component. An overview of completed courses can be found under the tab Status and overview.

For every compulsory course, Studentweb will suggest a semester. If the suggested semester does not fit into your plan, please contact the PhD officer at your Department.

We kindly remind you of the importance of updating your contact information in Studentweb. If not, you risk missing out on important information.

To log in, please use Feide (UiO user name and password). You will find more information here.

If you have trouble logging in, questions regarding functionality or data in Studentweb, please contact the research officer at the faculty.

4) Progress reports

All PhD Candidates are required to submit an annual report to the PhD Coordinator at the department. The deadline is 1 December.

Prior to the reporting deadline, candidates will be notified about how and what to report.

Failure to report will result in the candidate losing their place on the programme.

5) Midway assessment

A midway assessment is conducted of all candidates on the PhD programme at the Faculty of Humanities.

Midway assessment

6) The thesis

The scope of the doctoral thesis must enable it to be written within the framework of the PhD programme, with a nominal length of study of 3 years net.

The thesis may consist of a single work, or several shorter works.

Read more about the scope, articles and abstracts, language and co-authors.

Departmental rules

Each department has its own courses, routines for approval and requirements for participation and composition of the educational component.

Department of:

Compulsory courses (start up seminar, theory of knowledge and research ethics)

All PhD Candidates must take part in the faculty’s introduction courses. The courses are compulsory and give a combined total of 5 credits.

Read more about the compulsory courses

Elective courses (dissemination, writing, reference tools)

Various courses are held that are not necessarily credit-bearing, but which can aid the researcher’s work and provide additional skills, including dissemination courses and writing courses.

Read more about the elective courses

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Published Apr. 22, 2015 8:21 AM - Last modified Nov. 23, 2018 4:13 PM