Milestones during the first year

 

Milestones during the first year of the PhD Programme

1. Overview

Enrolment on the 5+3 programme at the PhD School under SAMF involves three evaluations being carried out during the PhD programme of study:

 

  • Evaluation 6-9 months after enrolment
  • Mid-term evaluation 16-18 months after enrolment
  • Third evaluation 30 months after enrollment 
2. The PhD plan

The PhD plan 

Students under the 4+4 programme must submit a PhD plan to the PhD committee for approval no later than two months after enrolling, cf. section 9. The PhD plan can be of a more preliminary character than PhD plans under the 5+3 programme, but plans for courses in Part A should be clarified and the PhD plan must include deliberations about all items in the plan and a statement from the principal supervisor.

The updated PhD plan

After approximately one year of enrolment in a PhD programme, the PhD plan must be updated and forwarded to the PhD School Secretariat no later than 14 months after enrolment. At the same time, a statement from the principal supervisor containing an evaluation of the course of the programme to date and the updated PhD plan, as well as an assessment of the probability that the student will be able to complete the programme in accordance with the PhD plan must be forwarded. The statement must either confirm that the PhD study programme will be performed in accordance with the PhD plan or provide an account of any adjustments that may be necessary. The PhD student must be given a copy of the statement and is allowed two weeks to comment on it.

The Head of PhD School decides whether the PhD study programme has been performed satisfactorily on the basis of the updated PhD plan and the principal supervisor's statement.

3. The PhD plan must contain the following

The PhD plan must contain:

  1. Information on the academic field, departmental connection and attachment to a research training programme, if applicable.
  2. A timetable for the PhD programme as a whole, which provides an account of the completion of the individual elements of the programme.
  3. An agreement on the form supervision will take. There must be information on the number of hours of supervision that can be expected per semester, on the division of roles between the principal supervisor and the co-supervisor and the extent to which they are available to the PhD student.
  4. A plan for the PhD project. A description of the research project, including information on research issues, theories and methods and a description of any subsidiary projects and milestones.
  5. A plan for the form the thesis will take (monograph or articles).
  6. A plan for PhD courses. The composition of PhD courses must be agreed in consultation with the principal supervisor. If possible, descriptions of planned courses must be enclosed.
  7. A plan for participating in active research environments – including stays at other, mainly foreign, research institiontion, private research enterpriceses, etc.
  8. A copyright agreement. If the PhD programme is performed in collaboration with several parties, the PhD plan must include an agreement on copyright and the rights to the data collected. Any limitations of copyright must be approved by the Dean on the recommendation of the Head of PhD School. The thesis will be published if there are no special circumstances to prevent this.
  9. A funding plan (budget). Funding for the PhD programme must be approved in connection with enrolment. It must be made clear whether the research training programme will be funded through internal or external means.
  10. An evaluation of the PhD plan by the principal supervisor and the PhD student's requirements in relation to the plan, including an evaluation of whether it is realistic to assume that the PhD student will be capable of realising the plan within the PhD period. 

Students under the 4+4 programme must submit a PhD plan to the PhD committee for approval no later than two months after enrolling, cf. section 9. The PhD plan can be of a more preliminary character than PhD plans under the 5+3 programme, but plans for courses in Part A should be clarified and the PhD plan must include deliberations about all items in the plan and a statement from the principal supervisor

The updated PhD plan

After approximately one year of enrolment in a PhD programme, the PhD plan must be updated and forwarded to the PhD School Secretariat no later than 14 months after enrolment. At the same time, a statement from the principal supervisor containing an evaluation of the course of the programme to date and the updated PhD plan, as well as an assessment of the probability that the student will be able to complete the programme in accordance with the PhD plan must be forwarded. The statement must either confirm that the PhD study programme will be performed in accordance with the PhD plan or provide an account of any adjustments that may be necessary. The PhD student must be given a copy of the statement and is allowed two weeks to comment on it.

The Head of PhD School decides whether the PhD study programme has been performed satisfactorily on the basis of the updated PhD plan and the principal supervisor's statement.

4. At what time is my PhD plan to be handed in?

The PhD plan

Students under the 4+4 programme must submit a PhD plan to the PhD committee for approval no later than two months after enrolling, cf. section 9.

The updated PhD plan

After approximately one year of enrolment in a PhD programme, the PhD plan must be updated and forwarded to the PhD School Secretariat no later than 14 months after enrolment.

5. The status seminar

The purpose of this evaluation is to ensure a preliminary overview of the PhD programme with a focus on delineation, quality and progression in the PhD project. This provides the opportunity to ensure optimal planning of the PhD student's exchange programme/relocation, as well as the opportunity to ensure early management of possible risk factors.

6. Deadlines
The first evaluation of the PhD programme shall be conducted 6-9 months after enrolment.
7. The evaluation must contain the following

The evaluation is conducted as a status seminar with the presentation of the PhD project for the research group/department.

 

It will be up to the respective department to define the method, but it will be a requirement that feedback be given to the PhD School from the PhD student and principal supervisor on how and when the status seminar was conducted, as well as who participated.

 

The PhD School’s form for evaluation after 6-9 months (Status seminar) must be used.

8. Assessment of the evaluation

The Head of PhD School must approve the  evaluation. The Head of PhD School will inform the PhD student and the principal supervisor of the result of the evaluation in writing.

The Head of PhD School may decide to call in the PhD student and/or his/her principal supervisor for an interview in order to obtain more details in connection with the written material.

After each evaluation, the Head of PhD School decides whether the course of the programme has been satisfactory on the basis of the written material and any interviews. The PhD student and his/her principal supervisor will be informed of this decision in writing.

Enrolment will automatically be extended if the course of the PhD study programme has been approved.

If the course of the programme cannot be approved, clear reasons for this and an itemisation of the areas that have not been satisfactory must be given to enable the PhD student to consider how to tackle its shortcomings. In the event, the PhD student is allowed two weeks to come up with comments, after which he/she will receive an offer to re-establish the programme.

9. Changes in the PhD plan

In addition to the regular evaluations, the course of the PhD programme must also be evaluated if major changes are made in the PhD project or other elements of the PhD plan. Examples of major changes are significant changes in the research design, data or theory foundation. There may also be major changes in timetables, including delays in connection with subsidiary elements. Finally, there may be changes in the form of the thesis, changes in the location or duration of study periods abroad, or major changes in the course programme or communication activities.

In cases where such changes are made, the PhD student and his/her principal supervisor must jointly write a report describing the changes and the reasons for them. The report must be forwarded to the PhD School Secretariat. The principal supervisor is responsible for forwarding the report.

The principal supervisor forwards a statement on the course of the programme to date and of the planned changes in relation to the PhD plan, as well as an assessment of the probability that the PhD student will be able to complete the programme in accordance with the PhD plan, together with the report describing the changes. The statement must either confirm that the PhD study programme will be performed in accordance with the PhD plan or provide an account of any adjustments that may be necessary. The PhD student must be given a copy of the statement and is allowed two weeks to comment on it.

10. Rectification period

If the Head of PhD School concludes that the PhD student has failed to live up to the requirements in the PhD plan in spite of any adjustments that may have been made, the PhD student must be offered an opportunity to re-establish the PhD study programme within three months. The three months may not as such lead to an extension of the overall PhD programme. The chance to get back on course in connection with a regular assessment can only be given to the PhD student once during the PhD programme.

If the PhD student has not accepted the offer to re-establish the programme within a week of receiving an offer to this effect, enrolment will be terminated.

If the PhD student accepts the offer to rectify the programme, the Head of PhD School will appoint an assessment committee comprising two expert examiners and the principal supervisor. The assessment committee must set out concrete goals as to how the PhD student can re-establish his/her study programme within the three months and decide whether there is a need to change the PhD plan.

At the end of the three months, the assessment committee must perform a new assessment within a month to determine whether the PhD student has achieved the goals set out and can continue with his/her study programme.

If, after the three months, the assessment is positive, the Head of PhD School can approve it and the PhD student can continue his/her studies. The Head of PhD School will inform the PhD student and his/her principal supervisor about the decision in writing.

If, after the three months, the assessment is still negative, enrolment will be terminated. The Head of PhD School may decide to inform another place of employment, if any, of this. The Head of PhD School will inform the PhD student and his/her principal supervisor about the decision in writing. The PhD student can submit remarks to the Dean about the decision made by the Head of PhD School within a week. In this case, the final decision will be made by the Dean.

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