The programme admits new doctoral students twice a year: once in the spring and once in the autumn.
The spring 2023 application period is from April 4, 2023 09:00 AM EEST until April 18, 2023 03:00 PM EEST.
The autumn 2023 application period is from September 1, 2023 09:00 AM EEST until September 14, 2023 03:00 PM EEST:
A doctoral study right can only be gained through the admissions process. Applying to the programme outside the set admission periods is not possible.
In addition to the university's general requirements for doctoral applicants on eligibility and language proficiency, the doctoral programme requires that the following conditions are met:
The doctoral programme recommends that, well in advance of submitting their application, applicants contact teachers in the suitable field to receive instructions concerning the suitability of their research proposal for supervisory and research profile in the field (no supervisory assistance can otherwise be offered for the research proposal). Applicants are expected to use their initiative in finding a supervisor (see selection criteria, supervisory arrangements). Email messages sent to teachers must be accompanied by a preliminary research proposal (max. 5 pages).
A favourable statement from the desired supervisor is not required at the application stage.
The previous degree must be relevant to the planned research topic and the discipline. A degree is regarded as relevant if it includes sufficient studies in a discipline which, given the topic of the proposed doctoral dissertation, can be regarded as a suitable basis for doctoral studies.
Applicants who have previously completed a doctoral degree in another field are also recommended to outline the scholarly grounds for reapplying for doctoral studies.
Only applications meeting the formal criteria for eligibility continue to scientific evaluation in the doctoral programmes.
The target degrees available within the programme are:
All successful applicants are admitted to complete a doctoral degree, but they can choose to first complete a Licentiate degree.
Please, check which degree is available in the chosen faculty with your background studies and also, note that your supervisory arrangements must match your chosen target degree and home faculty. At least one of your supervisors must be in a permanent or long-term employment to the faculty you're applying to.
Availability of supervision and related resources is elementary for doctoral research: as a rule, the person who agrees to serve as the supervisor can simultaneously supervise no more than six students who are completing their postgraduate degree in a way that is equivalent to full-time studying.
Applicants must, in good time before submitting the application, contact the field of science relevant to their research interests and discuss the preliminary study plan and research plan as well as arrangements for dissertation supervision. Each applicant is responsible for finding a potential supervisor to contact with in the application phase. Email messages sent to teachers must be accompanied by a preliminary research proposal (max. 5 pages).
The list of potential supervisors in the programme
An approval form from supervisors is not required when applying for this doctoral programme. If it is asked on the application form, please, submit an empty page or the e-mail conversation with your potential supervisors.
Evaluation of the research plan is based on these general criteria:
The following are emphasized when assessing the quality and suitability of previous studies:
Before drawing up your own preliminary study plan, please acquaint yourself with the doctoral programme's degree requirements. The study plan presented in the application is preliminary, and need not list specific courses. The important thing is that you have given thought on what kind of studies would best support your thesis work and drawn up a preliminary timetable for completing these studies.
Courses and studying in the Doctoral Programme in Social Sciences
It’s good to note that admissions to the programme are quite competitive and it’s important to prepare the application carefully. The yearly admission quota for the years 2021-2024 is max 46 new students each year.
Acquainted with the selection criteria and all set to apply? Great! Now go back to the university's general instructions for doctoral applicants, where you will find all the information you need to prepare and submit your application and the needed enclosures. Good luck!
Applications meeting the formal eligibility requirements will proceed to the academic assessment of the application, which will take place in the doctoral programme by its supervisors. The final decision on granting the right to pursue a degree will be made by the faculty responsible for the target degree based on a proposal by the steering group of the doctoral programme in question.
In conjunction with admission, the doctoral programme and the title of the doctoral degree to be pursued will be confirmed, and the student will be assigned at least two supervisors who have completed a doctoral degree and of whom at least one has a permanent or long-term employment contract with the Faculty in which the student will pursue the doctoral degree. In addition, each student will be assigned a coordinating academic, who may also serve as one of the dissertation supervisors.
A timetable for decisions is available in the university's general instructions for doctoral applicants.