Prospective postgraduate students

Postgraduate research education is based on a Finnish second-cycle (Master’s) degree or an equivalent international degree that provides eligibility for corresponding postgraduate education. Persons who have acquired the knowledge and skills necessary for pursuing postgraduate education by other means can only be accepted as postgraduate students in very exceptional cases (Universities Act 558/2009, section 37).

See the University of Helsinki instructions on applying for a right to pursue a doctoral degree.

More detailed application instructions and the application periods are on the Doctoral programmes' web-pages. The programmes a Faculty of Pharmacy doctoral student may join:

Doctoral Programme in Drug Research (DPDR)

Doctoral Programme in Integrative Life Science (ILS)

Doctoral Programme Brain & Mind (Brain & Mind)

Doctoral Programme in Biomedicine (DPBM)

Doctoral programme in Population Health (DocPop)

Doctoral Programme in Chemistry and Molecular Sciences (CHEMS)

Doctoral Programme in Materials Research and Nanoscience (MATRENA)




The doctoral degree comprises the doctoral dissertation and its defence in a public examination and 40 credits of theoretical studies. These credits are distributed between discipline-specific studies (30 credits) and general competence studies (10 credits). The degree requirements are Doctoral Programme specific.

The doctoral dissertation may be a monograph or a compilation of scientific publications or articles accepted for publication that deal with the same research problem, accompanied by a summarising article (i.e., an article-based dissertation). These may include co-authored articles.

Postgraduate degrees offered by the Faculty of Pharmacy include the following: Doctor of Philosophy (Pharmacy), Doctor of Philosophy and Licentiate of Pharmacy.

When approving an application for postgraduate studies, the Faculty will decide on the basis of the applicant’s previous studies and the topic of the planned doctoral dissertation to which degree the applicant’s studies will lead.

The Faculty verifies that the application documents fulfil the formal requirements and that the applicant is eligible to apply.

The doctoral programme evaluates the quality of the applications and submit a reasoned proposal on successful applicants to the Faculty. The doctoral programme will assess the applicant’s suitability for doctoral studies and the programme based on his or her academic performance, research plan and competence, taking into consideration the proposed supervision and monitoring group arrangements as well as the availability of resources essential to the realisation of the research plan. The doctoral programme may either recommend or reject the applicant in its statement. Rejections must be justified in writing.

The decision proposal will be prepared at the Faculty, and the decision to either grant or deny the right to study will be made by the dean. The decision will be made on the basis of the statement by the doctoral programme.

Applicants will be notified of the decision by e-mail. Applicants dissatisfied with an admission decision may submit a written appeal to the faculty council within 14 days and, in the next stage, to the administrative court within 30 days of the receipt of the decision. The appeal must be submitted in writing and indicate in detail the decision appealed against as well as the grounds for the appeal.

Timetable for decision-making on each application round is seen on the website of the Doctoral Programme.